Functional analysis of auxin receptor OsTIR1/OsAFB family members in rice grain yield, tillering, plant height, root system, germination, and auxinic herbicide resistance

New Phytol. 2021 Mar;229(5):2676-2692. doi: 10.1111/nph.17061. Epub 2020 Dec 10.


Auxin regulates almost every aspect of plant growth and development and is perceived by the TIR1/AFB auxin co-receptor proteins differentially acting in concert with specific Aux/IAA transcriptional repressors. Little is known about the diverse functions of TIR1/AFB family members in species other than Arabidopsis. We created targeted OsTIR1 and OsAFB2-5 mutations in rice using CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing, and functionally characterized the roles of these five members in plant growth and development and auxinic herbicide resistance. Our results demonstrated that functions of OsTIR1/AFB family members are partially redundant in grain yield, tillering, plant height, root system and germination. Ostir1, Osafb2 and Osafb4 mutants exhibited more severe phenotypes than Osafb3 and Osafb5. The Ostir1Osafb2 double mutant displays extremely severe defects in plant development. All five OsTIR1/AFB members interacted with OsIAA1 and OsIAA11 proteins in vivo. Root elongation assay showed that each Ostir1/afb2-5 mutant was resistant to 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) treatment. Notably, only the Osafb4 mutants were strongly resistant to the herbicide picloram, suggesting that OsAFB4 is a unique auxin receptor in rice. Our findings demonstrate similarities and specificities of auxin receptor TIR1/AFB proteins in rice, and could offer the opportunity to modify effective herbicide-resistant alleles in agronomically important crops.

Keywords: OsTIR1/OsAFBs; auxin receptors; auxin resistance; herbicide; miR393; picloram; rice.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • F-Box Proteins* / genetics
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Plant
  • Germination
  • Herbicide Resistance*
  • Indoleacetic Acids
  • Oryza* / genetics
  • Oryza* / growth & development
  • Plant Proteins / genetics*


  • F-Box Proteins
  • Indoleacetic Acids
  • Plant Proteins