Glucose delays seed germination in Arabidopsis thaliana

Planta. 2004 Feb;218(4):579-88. doi: 10.1007/s00425-003-1154-9. Epub 2003 Nov 25.


Here we report that glucose delays germination of Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh. seeds at concentrations below those known to inhibit early seedling development. This inhibition acts on embryo growth and is independent of hexokinase (HXK) function. Hormones and hormone inhibitors were applied to the germination media and several hormone biosynthesis and signalling mutants were tested on glucose media to investigate a possible role of abscisic acid (ABA), gibberellin and ethylene in the glucose-induced germination delay. Results indicate that the germination inhibition by glucose cannot be antagonized by ethylene or gibberellin and is independent of the HXK1/ABA/ ABI4 signalling cascade. These findings suggest that there is a separate regulatory pathway independent of ABI2/ ABI4/ ABI5. Thus, in a relatively short time frame sugars utilize different signalling cascades to inhibit germination and post-germination growth, underlining the complexity of sugar responses.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Abscisic Acid / pharmacology
  • Arabidopsis / drug effects
  • Arabidopsis / genetics*
  • Germination / physiology*
  • Glucose / metabolism
  • Glucose / pharmacology*
  • Plant Growth Regulators / pharmacology
  • Seeds / drug effects
  • Seeds / physiology*
  • Signal Transduction
  • Sorbitol / metabolism


  • Plant Growth Regulators
  • Sorbitol
  • Abscisic Acid
  • Glucose