Molecular mechanisms of flower development: an armchair guide

Nat Rev Genet. 2005 Sep;6(9):688-98. doi: 10.1038/nrg1675.


An afternoon stroll through an English garden reveals the breathtaking beauty and enormous diversity of flowering plants. The extreme variation of flower morphologies, combined with the relative simplicity of floral structures and the wealth of floral mutants available, has made the flower an excellent model for studying developmental cell-fate specification, morphogenesis and tissue patterning. Recent molecular genetic studies have begun to reveal the transcriptional regulatory cascades that control early patterning events during flower formation, the dynamics of the gene-regulatory interactions, and the complex combinatorial mechanisms that create a distinct final floral architecture and form.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cell Differentiation / physiology*
  • Flowers / embryology*
  • Flowers / metabolism
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Plant*
  • Genes, Plant / genetics*
  • Magnoliopsida / embryology
  • Magnoliopsida / genetics*
  • Models, Biological*
  • Morphogenesis*