Journal of Plant Research

, Volume 122, Issue 1, pp 31–39

Plant meristems: CLAVATA3/ESR-related signaling in the shoot apical meristem and the root apical meristem

  • Hiroki Miwa
  • Atsuko Kinoshita
  • Hiroo Fukuda
  • Shinichiro Sawa
Current Topics in Plant Research

Abstract

The plant meristems, shoot apical meristem (SAM) and root apical meristem (RAM), are unique structures made up of a self-renewing population of undifferentiated pluripotent stem cells. The SAM produces all aerial parts of postembryonic organs, and the RAM promotes the continuous growth of roots. Even though the structures of the SAM and RAM differ, the signaling components required for stem cell maintenance seem to be relatively conserved. Both meristems utilize cell-to-cell communication to maintain proper meristematic activities and meristem organization and to coordinate new organ formation. In SAM, an essential regulatory mechanism for meristem organization is a regulatory loop between WUSCHEL (WUS) and CLAVATA (CLV), which functions in a non-cell-autonomous manner. This intercellular signaling network coordinates the development of the organization center, organ boundaries and distant organs. The CLAVATA3/ESR (CLE)-related genes produce signal peptides, which act non-cell-autonomously in the meristem regulation in SAM. In RAM, it has been suggested that a similar mechanism can regulate meristem maintenance, but these functions are largely unknown. Here, we overview the WUSCLV signaling network for stem cell maintenance in SAM and a related mechanism in RAM maintenance. We also discuss conservation of the regulatory system for stem cells in various plant species.

Keywords

CLAVATA3/ESR (CLE) CLAVATA (CLV) Leucine-rich repeat-receptor like kinase (LRR-RLK) Meristem Root apical meristem (RAM) Shoot apical meristem (SAM) 

Copyright information

© The Botanical Society of Japan and Springer 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hiroki Miwa
    • 1
  • Atsuko Kinoshita
    • 1
  • Hiroo Fukuda
    • 1
  • Shinichiro Sawa
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of ScienceUniversity of TokyoTokyoJapan

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