Indexed on: 06 Jun '07Published on: 06 Jun '07Published in: Cell Research
Leaf morphogenesis requires the establishment of adaxial-abaxial polarity after primordium initiation from the shoot apical meristem (SAM). Several families of transcription factors are known to play critical roles in promoting adaxial or abaxial leaf fate. Recently, post-transcriptional gene silencing pathways have been shown to regulate the establishment of leaf polarity, providing novel and exciting insights into leaf development. For example, microRNAs (miR165/166) and a trans-acting siRNA (TAS3-derived tasiR-ARF) have been shown to repress the expression of several key transcription factor genes. In addition, yet another level of regulation, post-translational regulation, has been revealed recently by studies on the role of the 26S proteasome in leaf polarity. Although our understanding regarding the molecular mechanisms underlying establishment of adaxial-abaxial polarity has greatly improved, there is still much that remains elusive. This review aims to discuss recent progress, as well as the remaining questions, regarding the molecular mechanisms underlying leaf polarity formation.