3 years ago

Phloem-Mobile RNAs as Systemic Signaling Agents.

Ham, Lucas
The plant vascular system plays a central role in coordinating physiological and developmental events through delivery of both essential nutrients and long-distance signaling agents. The enucleate phloem sieve tube system of the angiosperms contains a broad spectrum of RNA species. Grafting and transcriptomics studies have indicated that several thousand mRNAs move long distances from source organs to meristematic sink tissues. Ribonucleoprotein complexes play a pivotal role as stable RNA-delivery systems for systemic translocation of cargo RNA. In this review, we assess recent progress in the characterization of phloem and plasmodesmal transport as an integrated local and systemic communication network. We discuss the roles of phloem-mobile small RNAs in epigenetic events, including meristem development and genome stability, and the delivery of mRNAs to specific tissues in response to environmental inputs. A large body of evidence now supports a model in which phloem-mobile RNAs act as critical components of gene regulatory networks involved in plant growth, defense, and crop yield at the whole-plant level.

Publisher URL: http://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-arplant-042916-041139

DOI: 10.1146/annurev-arplant-042916-041139

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