Editors' ChoicePlant biology

Multiple Inputs to Flowering

Science Signaling  04 Jun 2013:
Vol. 6, Issue 278, pp. ec130
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.2004391

Perennial plants need to cycle through an extended vegetative phase, in a process known as vernalization, before they initiate flowering. Bergonzi et al. and Zhou et al. studied how molecular signals translate environmental information—such as exposure to a winter season or changes in day length and physiological information, such as age of the plant—into signals that promote flowering. In both Arabis alpina and Cardamine flexuosa, age and vernalization pathways are integrated through the regulation of microRNAs miR156 and miR172.

S. Bergonzi, M. C. Albani, E. Ver Loren van Themaat, K. J. V. Nordström, R. Wang, K. Schneeberger, P. D. Moerland, G. Coupland, Mechanisms of age-dependent response to winter temperature in perennial flowering of Arabis alpina. Science 340, 1094–1097 (2013). [Abstract] [Full Text]

C.-M. Zhou, T.-Q. Zhang, X. Wang, S. Yu, H. Lian, H. Tang, Z.-Y. Feng, J. Zozomova-Lihová, J.-W. Wang, Molecular basis of age-dependent vernalization in Cardamine flexuosa. Science 340, 1097–1100 (2013). [Abstract] [Full Text]