A PLETHORA-auxin transcription module controls cell division plane rotation through MAP65 and CLASP

Cell. 2012 Apr 13;149(2):383-96. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2012.02.051.


Despite their pivotal role in plant development, control mechanisms for oriented cell divisions have remained elusive. Here, we describe how a precisely regulated cell division orientation switch in an Arabidopsis stem cell is controlled by upstream patterning factors. We show that the stem cell regulatory PLETHORA transcription factors induce division plane reorientation by local activation of auxin signaling, culminating in enhanced expression of the microtubule-associated MAP65 proteins. MAP65 upregulation is sufficient to reorient the cortical microtubular array through a CLASP microtubule-cell cortex interaction mediator-dependent mechanism. CLASP differentially localizes to cell faces in a microtubule- and MAP65-dependent manner. Computational simulations clarify how precise 90° switches in cell division planes can follow self-organizing properties of the microtubule array in combination with biases in CLASP localization. Our work demonstrates how transcription factor-mediated processes regulate the cellular machinery to control orientation of formative cell divisions in plants.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Retracted Publication

MeSH terms

  • Arabidopsis / cytology*
  • Arabidopsis / metabolism*
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / metabolism*
  • Cell Division
  • Indoleacetic Acids / metabolism
  • Meristem / cytology
  • Meristem / metabolism
  • Microtubule-Associated Proteins / metabolism*
  • Plant Cells / metabolism*
  • Plant Epidermis / cytology
  • Plant Epidermis / metabolism
  • Plant Roots / cytology
  • Plant Roots / metabolism
  • Transcription Factors / metabolism


  • Arabidopsis Proteins
  • CLASP protein, Arabidopsis
  • Indoleacetic Acids
  • MAP65-1 protein, Arabidopsis
  • MAP65-2 protein, Arabidopsis
  • Microtubule-Associated Proteins
  • Transcription Factors