Exploiting the triple response of Arabidopsis to identify ethylene-related mutants

Plant Cell. 1990 Jun;2(6):513-23. doi: 10.1105/tpc.2.6.513.


Alterations in the response of dark-grown seedlings to ethylene (the "triple response") were used to isolate a collection of ethylene-related mutants in Arabidopsis thaliana. Mutants displaying a constitutive response (eto1) were found to produce at least 40 times more ethylene than the wild type. The morphological defects in etiolated eto1-1 seedlings reverted to wild type under conditions in which ethylene biosynthesis or ethylene action were inhibited. Mutants that failed to display the apical hook in the absence of ethylene (his1) exhibited reduced ethylene production. In the presence of exogenous ethylene, hypocotyl and root of etiolated his1-1 seedlings were inhibited in elongation but no apical hook was observed. Mutants that were insensitive to ethylene (ein1 and ein2) produced increased amounts of ethylene, displayed hormone insensitivity in both hypocotyl and root responses, and showed an apical hook. Each of the "triple response" mutants has an effect on the shape of the seedling and on the production of the hormone. These mutants should prove to be useful tools for dissecting the mode of ethylene action in plants.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Chromosome Mapping
  • Crosses, Genetic
  • Ethylenes / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Ethylenes / biosynthesis
  • Ethylenes / pharmacology*
  • Fabaceae / drug effects*
  • Fabaceae / genetics*
  • Fabaceae / radiation effects
  • Genes, Plant / genetics
  • Lyases / biosynthesis
  • Morphogenesis / genetics*
  • Mutagenesis
  • Mutation / genetics
  • Photic Stimulation
  • Plants, Medicinal*


  • Ethylenes
  • ethylene
  • Lyases
  • ethylene forming enzyme
  • 1-aminocyclopropanecarboxylate synthase