Phytochromes in harmony with blue light photoreceptors play a major role in controlling plant growth and development from germination to seed maturation. Light absorption by phytochromes triggers a signaling cascade, phototransduction, which culminates in regulated gene expression. A major regulatory step at the cellular level, which affects specificities of light-induced physiological responses, seems to be the light-quality and light-quantity dependent nuclear import of the phytochromes themselves. The correlations found between the nuclear import of phytochromes (phyA and phyB) and various physiological responses regulated by these photoreceptors provides strong support for this hypothesis.
Copyright 2000 Academic Press.