Arabidopsis response regulators ARR3 and ARR4 play cytokinin-independent roles in the control of circadian period

Plant Cell. 2006 Jan;18(1):55-69. doi: 10.1105/tpc.105.037994. Epub 2005 Dec 2.


Light and temperature are potent environmental signals used to synchronize the circadian oscillator with external time and photoperiod. Phytochrome and cryptochrome photoreceptors integrate light quantity and quality to modulate the pace and phase of the clock. PHYTOCHROME B (phyB) controls period length in red light as well as the phase of the clock in white light. phyB interacts with ARABIDOPSIS RESPONSE REGULATOR4 (ARR4) in a light-dependent manner. Accordingly, we tested ARR4 and other members of the type-A ARR family for roles in clock function and show that ARR4 and its closest relative, ARR3, act redundantly in the Arabidopsis thaliana circadian system. Loss of ARR3 and ARR4 lengthens the period of the clock even in the absence of light, demonstrating that they do so independently of active phyB. In addition, in white light, arr3,4 mutants show a leading phase similar to phyB mutants, suggesting that circadian light input is modulated by the interaction of phyB with ARR4. Although type-A ARRs are involved in cytokinin signaling, the circadian defects appear to be independent of cytokinin, as exogenous cytokinin affects the phase but not the period of the clock. Therefore, ARR3 and ARR4 are critical for proper circadian period and define an additional level of regulation of the circadian clock in Arabidopsis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Arabidopsis / genetics
  • Arabidopsis / physiology*
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / genetics
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / metabolism*
  • Biological Clocks / physiology*
  • Circadian Rhythm / physiology*
  • Cotyledon / metabolism
  • Cytokinins / metabolism*
  • Light
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mutation
  • Photoperiod*
  • Phytochrome B / genetics
  • Phytochrome B / metabolism
  • Plants, Genetically Modified
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / genetics
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction / physiology
  • Temperature
  • Transcription Factors / genetics
  • Transcription Factors / metabolism*


  • ARR3 protein, Arabidopsis
  • ARR4 protein, Arabidopsis
  • Arabidopsis Proteins
  • Cytokinins
  • PHYB protein, Arabidopsis
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins
  • Transcription Factors
  • Phytochrome B