The plant hormone auxin is a major regulator of plant development and response to environmental cues. Auxin plays a particularly central role in flower development, but the knowledge of its role of flower development in crop plants with fleshy fruits, such as tomato, is still scarce. Mutations in the Aux/IAA gene ENTIRE/Indole Acetic Acid 9 (E/IAA9) lead to the precocious development of young gynoecia into parthenocarpic fruits. Here, we compared the distribution of the auxin response sensor DR5::VENUS and the auxin efflux transporter PIN1 between the wild type and entire during successive stages of flower and fruit development. Up-regulation of the DR5::VENUS signal in the shoot apical meristem (SAM) was observed upon the transition to flowering, implicating a possible role for auxin in the transition from a vegetative SAM into an inflorescence meristem. DR5::VENUS was expressed in all initiating floral organs. Additionally, DR5::VENUS was highly expressed during gametogenesis, in both male and female organs, and in the developing seeds during embryogenesis. DR5::VENUS is expressed in functional cell layers such as the anther stomium and tapetum, suggesting that auxin plays a role in flower organ development and function. The entire mutation affected DR5::VENUS expression patterns during inflorescence formation and flower organ development, which correlated with phenotypic alterations. We also show dynamic distribution and localization of the auxin transporter PIN1 during flower and fruit organ development. These results emphasize the dynamic auxin response in inflorescence and flower development and suggest multiple roles of auxin in these processes.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This research was supported by the Ministry of Agriculture Chief Scientist [Research Grant Nos. 261-0905-12 and 837-0140;13] and by the Israel Science Foundation [grant No. 539/14].
© The Author 2017.
- Shoot apical meristem