PHYTOCHROME KINASE SUBSTRATE1 regulates root phototropism and gravitropism

Plant Physiol. 2008 Jan;146(1):108-15. doi: 10.1104/pp.107.106468. Epub 2007 Nov 16.


Light promotes the expression of PHYTOCHROME KINASE SUBSTRATE1 (PKS1) in the root of Arabidopsis thaliana, but the function of PKS1 in this organ is unknown. Unilateral blue light induced a negative root phototropic response mediated by phototropin 1 in wild-type seedlings. This response was absent in pks1 mutants. In the wild type, unilateral blue light enhanced PKS1 expression in the subapical region of the root several hours before bending was detectable. The negative phototropism and the enhanced PKS1 expression in response to blue light required phytochrome A (phyA). In addition, the pks1 mutation enhanced the root gravitropic response when vertically oriented seedlings were placed horizontally. The negative regulation of gravitropism by PKS1 occurred even in dark-grown seedlings and did not require phyA. Blue light also failed to induce negative phototropism in pks1 under reduced gravitational stimulation, indicating that the effect of pks1 on phototropism is not simply the consequence of the counteracting effect of enhanced gravitropism. We propose a model where the background level of PKS1 reduces gravitropism. After a phyA-dependent increase in its expression, PKS1 positively affects root phototropism and both effects contribute to negative curvature in response to unilateral blue light.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Arabidopsis / genetics*
  • Arabidopsis / growth & development
  • Arabidopsis / metabolism*
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / genetics*
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / metabolism*
  • Color
  • Darkness
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Plant / physiology
  • Gravitropism
  • Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins / genetics*
  • Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins / metabolism*
  • Light
  • Membrane Proteins
  • Phosphoproteins / genetics*
  • Phosphoproteins / metabolism*
  • Phototropism
  • Plant Roots / genetics
  • Plant Roots / growth & development*
  • Plant Roots / metabolism*


  • Arabidopsis Proteins
  • Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins
  • Membrane Proteins
  • PKS1 protein, Arabidopsis
  • Phosphoproteins