Author(s): Stephenson PG, Fankhauser C, Terry MJ
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Abstract The phytochrome-interacting factor PIF3 has been proposed to act as a positive regulator of chloroplast development. Here, we show that the pif3 mutant has a phenotype that is similar to the pif1 mutant, lacking the repressor of chloroplast development PIF1, and that a pif1pif3 double mutant has an additive phenotype in all respects. The pif mutants showed elevated protochlorophyllide levels in the dark, and etioplasts of pif mutants contained smaller prolamellar bodies and more prothylakoid membranes than corresponding wild-type seedlings, similar to previous reports of constitutive photomorphogenic mutants. Consistent with this observation, pif1, pif3, and pif1pif3 showed reduced hypocotyl elongation and increased cotyledon opening in the dark. Transfer of 4-d-old dark-grown seedlings to white light resulted in more chlorophyll synthesis in pif mutants over the first 2 h, and analysis of gene expression in dark-grown pif mutants indicated that key tetrapyrrole regulatory genes such as HEMA1 encoding the rate-limiting step in tetrapyrrole synthesis were already elevated 2 d after germination. Circadian regulation of HEMA1 in the dark also showed reduced amplitude and a shorter, variable period in the pif mutants, whereas expression of the core clock components TOC1, CCA1, and LHY was largely unaffected. Expression of both PIF1 and PIF3 was circadian regulated in dark-grown seedlings. PIF1 and PIF3 are proposed to be negative regulators that function to integrate light and circadian control in the regulation of chloroplast development.
This article was published in Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A
and referenced in Journal of Plant Biochemistry & Physiology