'Conductor' gene found in plant root stem cell 'orchestra'

phys.org | 12/6/2019 | Staff
tingting2000tingting2000 (Posted by) Level 3
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In a new paper, researchers at North Carolina State University lift the veil on the "conductor" plant root stem cell gene that helps orchestrate and coordinate stem cell division of different root stem cell types, ensuring the harmonic communication necessary for plant growth and maintenance.

Ross Sozzani, an NC State associate professor of plant and microbial biology and corresponding author of the paper, says that the conductor behind this communication—which is critical to key aspects of plant development, including plant cell division, proliferation and differentiation—is a gene called TCX2, which is present in all the different plant root stem cells.

Orchestra - Instruments - Music - Plant - Root

Like an orchestra with its various component instruments working together to create beautiful music, plant root stem cells work within various networks to perform various functions. TCX2 ensures that these local networks communicate with each other, similar to an orchestra conductor making sure that horns, for example, don't drown out the violins.

The interdisciplinary research included molecular biology experiments in Arabadopsis thaliana, or mustard weed, as well as mathematical modeling and machine learning approaches to narrow down some 3,000 candidate genes and learn about the causal relationships between different root stem cell networks.

"We...
(Excerpt) Read more at: phys.org
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