Sci. Signal., 11 January 2011
Plant Biology Chill Wind
Pamela J. Hines
Science, AAAS, Washington, DC 20005, USA
For many plants, the chilly temperatures of winter act to coordinate flowering with the more favorable growth environment that follows in springtime. This process of vernalization translates environmental temperatures into developmental responses through a cascade of molecular responses that depend on epigenetic regulation of the floral repressor. Heo and Sung (see the Perspective by Turck and Coupland) have identified an RNA that is transcribed from an intron of the repressor gene but that itself does not encode a protein. Instead, this noncoding RNA, called COLDAIR, adds a histone-methylating complex onto the repressor locus. With the repressive gene itself repressed, the stage is then set to allow flowering.
Citation: P. J. Hines, Chill Wind. Sci. Signal. 4, ec13 (2011).
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