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Free Content ANAC012, a member of the plant-specific NAC transcription factor family, negatively regulates xylary fiber development in Arabidopsis thaliana

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Vascular plants evolved to have xylem that provides physical support for their growing body and serves as a conduit for water and nutrient transport. In a previous study, we used comparative-transcriptome analyses to select a group of genes that were upregulated in xylem of Arabidopsis plants undergoing secondary growth. Subsequent analyses identified a plant-specific NAC-domain transcription factor gene (ANAC012) as a candidate for genetic regulation of xylem formation. Promoter-GUS analyses showed that ANAC012 expression was preferentially localized in the (pro)cambium region of inflorescence stem and root. Using yeast transactivation analyses, we confirmed the function of ANAC012 as a transcriptional activator, and identified an activation domain in the C terminus. Ectopic overexpression of ANAC012 in Arabidopsis (35S::ANAC012 plants) dramatically suppressed secondary wall deposition in the xylary fiber and slightly increased cell-wall thickness in the xylem vessels. Cellulose compositions of the cell wall were decreased in the inflorescent stems and roots of 35S::ANAC012 plants, probably resulting from defects in xylary fiber formation. Our data suggest that ANAC012 may act as a negative regulator of secondary wall thickening in xylary fibers.
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Keywords: GeneChip; NAC transcription factor; secondary wall; vascular; xylary fiber; xylem

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Forestry, 126 Natural Resources, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824-1222, USA 2: Department of Energy-Plant Research Laboratory, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824-1312, USA

Publication date: June 1, 2007

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