Indexed on: 07 Jul '19Published on: 11 Apr '19Published in: Plant, Cell & Environment
Root tip is capable of sensing and adjusting its growth direction in response to gravity, a phenomenon known as gravitropism. Previously, we have shown that NEGATIVE GRAVITROPIC RESPONSE OF ROOTS (NGR) is essential for the positive gravitropic response of roots. Here we show that NGR, a plasma membrane protein specifically expressed in root columella and lateral root cap cells, controls the positive root gravitropic response by regulating auxin efflux carrier localization in columella cells and the direction of lateral auxin flow in response to gravity. Pharmacological and genetic studies show that the negative root gravitropic response of the ngr mutants depends on polar auxin transport (PAT) in the root elongation zone. Cell biology studies further demonstrate that polar localization of the auxin efflux carrier PIN3 in root columella cells and asymmetric lateral auxin flow in the root tip in response to gravistimulation are reversed in the atngr1;2;3 triple mutant. Furthermore, simultaneous mutations of three PIN genes expressed in root columella cells impaired the negative root gravitropic response of the atngr1;2;3 triple mutant. Our work revealed a critical role of NGR in root gravitropic response and provided an insight of the early events and molecular basis of the positive root gravitropism. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.