Entries by Jennifer Mach

Crossover Guard: MEICA1 Prevents Meiotic Mishaps

During meiosis, recombination between allelic sequences on pairs of homologous chromosomes forms crossovers; these crossovers help make sure that the homologs segregate accurately (reviewed in Zhang et al., 2014). However, cells must suppress recombination between non-allelic sequences, as ectopic recombination can create massive chromosomal rearrangements. Eukaryotes have evolved mechanisms to prevent non-allelic recombination, including suppressing […]

CONSTANS Companion: CO Binds the NF-YB/NF-YC Dimer and Confers Sequence-Specific DNA Binding

One of the central players in the complex regulation of flowering, CONSTANS (CO) functions as a center for integration of the various signals that determine the timing of flowering. As output, CO regulates the expression of FLOWERING LOCUS T (FT) and other genes (reviewed by Shim et al., 2017). CO contains a CCT (CONSTANS, CONSTANS-LIKE, […]

The Long Non-coding RNA ELENA1 Functions in Plant Immunity

Once seen as potential sequencing artifacts, long, non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs, >200 nucleotides) have gained recognition as important regulatory factors. LncRNAs are transcribed from a variety of genomic locations (introns, intergenic spaces, and coding regions) from the sense or antisense strand (reviewed in Chekanova, 2015). Moreover, lncRNAs function in cis or in trans and affect gene […]

Meristem Doming and the Transition to Reproductive Development in Tomato

During vegetative growth, the shoot apical meristem (SAM) produces lateral organ primordia but remains roughly the same size, as WUSCHEL–CLAVATA signaling modulates the balance between cell division and differentiation. During the transition to reproductive growth in many species, the SAM expands in size and becomes domed in shape, as if puffing itself up in anticipation […]

A Histone Chaperone and a Specific Transcription Factor Modulate GLABRA2 Expression in Root Hair Development

IN BRIEF by Jennifer Mach jmach@aspb.org To navigate its essential function of producing mRNAs, RNA polymerase II (Pol II) must navigate the thread of DNA, which winds around thousands of nucleosomes. If you’ve ever tried to use a sewing machine but got your bobbin thread tangled, then the task faced by Pol II may seem […]