Tendril-less regulates tendril formation in pea leaves

Julie Hofer, Lynda Turner, Carol Moreau, Mike Ambrose, Peter Isaac, Susan Butcher, James Weller, Adeline Dupin, Marion Dalmais, Christine Le Signor, Abdelhafid Bendahmane, Thomas Henry Ellis

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120 Citations (SciVal)
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Tendrils are contact-sensitive, filamentous organs that permit climbing plants to tether to their taller neighbors. Tendrilled legume species are grown as field crops, where the tendrils contribute to the physical support of the crop prior to harvest. The homeotic tendril-less (tl) mutation in garden pea (Pisum sativum), identified almost a century ago, transforms tendrils into leaflets. In this study, we used a systematic marker screen of fast neutron–generated tl deletion mutants to identify Tl as a Class I homeodomain leucine zipper (HDZIP) transcription factor. We confirmed the tendril-less phenotype as loss of function by targeting induced local lesions in genomes (TILLING) in garden pea and by analysis of the tendril-less phenotype of the t mutant in sweet pea (Lathyrus odoratus). The conversion of tendrils into leaflets in both mutants demonstrates that the pea tendril is a modified leaflet, inhibited from completing laminar development by Tl. We provide evidence to show that lamina inhibition requires Unifoliata/LEAFY-mediated Tl expression in organs emerging in the distal region of the leaf primordium. Phylogenetic analyses show that Tl is an unusual Class I HDZIP protein and that tendrils evolved either once or twice in Papilionoid legumes. We suggest that tendrils arose in the Fabeae clade of Papilionoid legumes through acquisition of the Tl gene.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)420-428
Number of pages9
JournalPlant Cell
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 31 Dec 2009


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