ARF2 – ARF4 and ARF5 are essential for female and male gametophyte development in Arabidopsis (Plant Cell Physiol.)

Auxin is considered a master molecule for plant growth and development; in a whimsical way, IAA (Indole – 3 – Acetic Acid) has been defined as “Induce Almost Anything”! Auxin-mediated gene expression is regulated by Auxin Responsive Factor (ARFs). The model plant Arabidopsis thaliana contains 23 ARFs. In Liu et al., microRNA-mediated silencing of AtARF2 – AtARF4, AtARF5, AtARF6 and AtARF8 was used to study their involvement in gametophyte development. In order to specifically silence the gametophyte-specific ARFs, the authors used ES1- promoter driven amiRARF and MIR167a. Resulting  transgenic plants showed abnormal embryo sacs and pollen grains.The results presented in Liu et al. reveal the role of AtARF2 – AtARF4 and AtARF5 in both female and male gametophyte development in Arabidopsis. (Summary by Arif Ashraf ) Plant Cell Physiol. 10.1093/pcp/pcx174