Characterizing the Molecular Mechanism Behind the Anti-Florigen ScFT2



Lesy, Victoria

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University of Guelph


Flowering is tightly regulated through distinct genetic pathways that converge at floral integrators called florigens. These conserved proteins are synthesized in leaves and migrate to the shoot apex to form a floral activation complex, which initiates reproductive growth by activating floral organ specificity. In sugarcane (Saccharum spp.), several florigen candidates, such as ScFT2, have been identified. Interestingly, overexpression of this gene in Arabidopsis disrupts the floral transition and causes a dramatic change in shoot architecture. This research aims to characterize the mechanism behind ScFT2 protein to determine how it causes an extreme vegetative phenotype. Localization and sequence analyses reveal that ScFT2 is similar to florigen molecules and is mobile throughout the plant. It can bind with key floral regulators and downregulate floral organ genes to maintain indeterminacy. Ultimately, a variety of new entities involved in floral regulation are identified to provide insights into the control of reproduction in plants.



Microscopy, Arabidopsis, Florigen, Sugarcane, ScFT2, Yeast 2 Hybrid, Anti-florgien, flowering