, Volume 21, Issue 3, pp 379-395

Genetic regulation of flower development

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Abstract

Flower development provides a model system to study mechanisms that govern pattern formation in plants. Most flowers consist of four organ types that are present in a specific order from the periphery to the centre of the flower. Reviewed here are studies on flower development in two model species:Arabidopsis thaliana andAntirrhinum majus that focus on the molecular genetic analysis of homeotic mutations affecting pattern formation in the flower. Based on these studies a model was proposed that explains how three classes of regulatory genes can together control the development of the correct pattern of organs in the flower. The universality of the basic tenets of the model is apparent from the analysis of the homologues of theArabidopsis genes from other plant species