Local Positive Feedback Regulation Determines Cell Shape in Root Hair Cells

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Science  29 Feb 2008:
Vol. 319, Issue 5867, pp. 1241-1244
DOI: 10.1126/science.1152505

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The specification and maintenance of growth sites are tightly regulated during cell morphogenesis in all organisms. ROOT HAIR DEFECTIVE 2 reduced nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (RHD2 NADPH) oxidase–derived reactive oxygen species (ROS) stimulate a Ca2+ influx into the cytoplasm that is required for root hair growth in Arabidopsis thaliana. We found that Ca2+, in turn, activated the RHD2 NADPH oxidase to produce ROS at the growing point in the root hair. Together, these components could establish a means of positive feedback regulation that maintains an active growth site in expanding root hair cells. Because the location and stability of growth sites predict the ultimate form of a plant cell, our findings demonstrate how a positive feedback mechanism involving RHD2, ROS, and Ca2+ can determine cell shape.

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