ANALYSIS OF ARABIDOPSIS ABCB AUXIN TRANSPORTER MUTANTS REVEALS A PRIMARY ROLE IN MEMBRANE EXCLUSION
Jenness, Mark Kubo
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Polar transport of the phytohormone auxin regulates multiple of aspects of plant growth and development. A subset of plant ATP-binding cassette subfamily B (ABCB) transporters mediate cellular auxin export. Loss of these transporters results in reduced polar auxin movement and altered plant architecture but no significant defects in embryogenesis or organ formation. Several of lines of evidence suggest that isotropically-localized ABCB transporters mediate auxin exclusion from the plasma membrane and prevention of reuptake after directional PIN-mediated efflux. Examination of the Arabidopsis auxin transporters ABCB1 and ABCB19 indicates a primary role in exclusion from small auxin producing cells in apical regions and prevention of leakage from polar auxin transport streams. Analysis of abcb mutants identifies a contribution from ABCB21 in restricting auxin to within the root vasculature in seedlings. In mature tissues, ABCB6, ABCB21, and ABCB11 make additional contributions to polar auxin transport in inflorescence stems, leaves, and flowers, respectively. The results presented herein reflect an evolutionarily conserved function for ABCB transporters in maintaining polar transport streams and prevention of cellular reuptake via exclusion.