A non-DNA-binding activity for the ATHB4 transcription factor in the control of vegetation proximity

Marçal Gallemí, Maria Jose Molina-Contreras, Sandi Paulišić, Merçe Salla-Martret, Çeline Sorin, Marta Godoy, Jose Manuel Franco-Zorrilla, Roberto Solano, Jaime F. Martínez-Garçıa

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● In plants, perception of vegetation proximity by phytochrome photoreceptors activates a transcriptional network that implements a set of responses to adapt to plant competition, including elongation of stems or hypocotyls. In Arabidopsis thaliana, the homeodomain-leucine zipper (HD-Zip) transcription factor ARABIDOPSIS THALIANA HOMEOBOX 4 (ATHB4) regulates this and other responses, such as leaf polarity. ● To better understand the shade regulatory transcriptional network, we have carried out structure-function analyses of ATHB4 by overexpressing a series of truncated and mutated forms and analyzing three different responses: hypocotyl response to shade, transcriptional activity and leaf polarity. ● Our results indicated that ATHB4 has two physically separated molecular activities: that performed by HD-Zip, which is involved in binding to DNA-regulatory elements, and that performed by the ETHYLENE-RESPONSIVE ELEMENT BINDING FACTOR-associated amphiphilic repression (EAR)-containing N-terminal region, which is involved in protein-protein interaction. Whereas both activities are required to regulate leaf polarity, DNA-binding activity is not required for the regulation of the seedling responses to plant proximity, which indicates that ATHB4 works as a transcriptional cofactor in the regulation of this response. ● These findings suggest that transcription factors might employ alternative mechanisms of action to regulate different developmental processes.

Idioma originalAnglès
Pàgines (de-a)798-813
Nombre de pàgines16
RevistaNew Phytologist
Estat de la publicacióPublicada - de nov. 2017
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