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Science 307 (5712): 1111-1113

Copyright © 2005 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science

Positional Signaling Mediated by a Receptor-like Kinase in Arabidopsis

Su-Hwan Kwak, Ronglai Shen, John Schiefelbein*

Abstract: The position-dependent specification of root epidermal cells in Arabidopsis provides an elegant paradigm for cell patterning during development. Here, we describe a new gene, SCRAMBLED (SCM), required for cells to appropriately interpret their location within the developing root epidermis. SCM encodes a receptor-like kinase protein with a predicted extracellular domain of six leucine-rich repeats and an intracellular serine-threonine kinase domain. SCM regulates the expression of the GLABRA2, CAPRICE, WEREWOLF, and ENHANCER OF GLABRA3 transcription factor genes that define the cell fates. Further, the SCM gene is expressed throughout the developing root. Therefore, SCM likely enables developing epidermal cells to detect positional cues and establish an appropriate cell-type pattern.

Department of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109–1048, USA.

* To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: schiefel{at}

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