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Science 316 (5827): 1030-1033

Copyright © 2007 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science

FT Protein Movement Contributes to Long-Distance Signaling in Floral Induction of Arabidopsis

Laurent Corbesier,1 Coral Vincent,1* Seonghoe Jang,1* Fabio Fornara,1 Qingzhi Fan,2 Iain Searle,1 Antonis Giakountis,1 Sara Farrona,1 Lionel Gissot,1 Colin Turnbull,2 George Coupland1{dagger}

Abstract: In plants, seasonal changes in day length are perceived in leaves, which initiate long-distance signaling that induces flowering at the shoot apex. The identity of the long-distance signal has yet to be determined. In Arabidopsis, activation of FLOWERING LOCUS T (FT) transcription in leaf vascular tissue (phloem) induces flowering. We found that FT messenger RNA is required only transiently in the leaf. In addition, FT fusion proteins expressed specifically in phloem cells move to the apex and move long distances between grafted plants. Finally, we provide evidence that FT does not activate an intermediate messenger in leaves. We conclude that FT protein acts as a long-distance signal that induces Arabidopsis flowering.

1 Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research, Carl von Linne Weg 10, D-50829 Cologne, Germany.
2 Division of Biology, Imperial College London, Wye Campus, Wye, Kent TN25 5AH, UK.

* These authors contributed equally to this work.

{dagger} To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: coupland{at}

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