3 years ago

Arabidopsis mTERF6 is required for leaf patterning

To enhance our understanding of the roles of mitochondrial transcription termination factors (mTERFs) in plants, we have taken a reverse genetic approach in Arabidopsis thaliana. One of the mutants isolated carried a novel allele of the mTERF6 gene, which we named mterf6-5. mTERF6 is a chloroplast and mitochondrial localised protein required for the maturation of chloroplast isoleucine tRNA. The mterf6-5 plants are pale and exhibit markedly reduced growth, and altered leaf and chloroplast development. Our qRT-PCR analyses revealed mis-expression of several plastid, mitochondrial and nuclear genes in mterf6-5 plants. Synergistic phenotypes were observed in double mutant combinations of mterf6-5 with alleles of other mTERF genes as well as with scabra3-2, affected in the plastid RpoTp RNA polymerase; these observations suggest a functional relationship between mTERF6, other mTERFs and SCA3. The mterf6-5 mutation also enhanced the leaf dorsoventral polarity defects of the asymmetric leaves1-1 (as1-1) mutant, which resulted in radial leaves. This interaction seemed specific of the impaired mTERF6 function because mutations in the mTERF genes MDA1 or TWR-1/mTERF9 did not result in radialised leaves. Furthermore, the mterf6-5 mutation dramatically increased the leaf phenotype of as2-1 and caused lethality early in vegetative development. Our results uncover a new role for mTERF6 in leaf patterning and highlight the importance of mTERFs in plant development.

Publisher URL: www.sciencedirect.com/science

DOI: S0168945217306842

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