, Volume 63, Issue 2, pp 221-235
Date: 25 Oct 2006

A negative regulatory role for auxin in sulphate deficiency response in Arabidopsis thaliana

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Sulphate is a major macronutrient required for the synthesis of the sulphur (S)-containing amino acid cysteine and thus is critical for cellular metabolism, growth and development and response to various abiotic and biotic stresses. A recent genome-wide expression study suggested that several auxin-inducible genes were up-regulated by S deficiency in Arabidopsis. Here, we examined the relationship between auxin signaling and S deficiency. Investigation of DR5::GUS expression patterns indicates that auxin accumulation and/or response is suppressed by S deficiency. Consistently, S deficiency resulted in the suppression of lateral root development, but the axr1-3 mutant was insensitive to this response. Furthermore, the activation of the promoter for the putative thioglucosidase gene (At2g44460) by S deficiency was suppressed by auxin, cytokinin and abscisic acid (ABA). Interestingly, the activation of At2g44460 by S deficiency is regulated by the availability of carbon and nitrogen nutrients in a tissue-specific manner. These results demonstrate that auxin plays a negative role in signaling to S deficiency. Given that activation of the genes encoding the sulphate transporter SULTR1;2 and 5′-adenylylsulphate reductase APR2 are suppressed by cytokinin only, we hypothesize that while cytokinin may play an important role in general S deficiency response, auxin might be only involved in a subset of S deficiency responses such as the release of thiol groups from the S storage sources.