Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: The mechanisms of gravity-dependent non-vertical growth in higher plants
Author: Kaye, Ryan Andrew Samuel
ISNI:       0000 0004 7654 6771
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2018
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
Plants are sessile organisms that cannot move their location in response to environmental stimuli and so, instead, react by modifying their physiology and the orientation of their growth. These alterations in growth direction are known as tropisms. Of the environmental stimuli perceived by plants, gravity is the only one that is constant and as such, gravitropism represents a base regulator of plant architecture, ensuring, among other things, that roots grow downwards and shoots typically grow upwards. The regulation of plant architecture is critical for the acquisition of resources such as light, water, and nutrients. In this context, the non-vertical growth of shoot and root branches allows the plant to optimise the orientation of lateral growth for resource capture. Much of the work carried out on gravitropic response has focused on the vertically growing primary organs, however recent work has sought to understand the maintenance of root and shoot branches at specific angles with respect to gravity, known as gravitropic setpoint angles (GSAs). Non-vertical GSAs are particularly interesting because their maintenance requires that the root and shoot branches can bend both with and against gravity. In this work, the existence of GSAs in the cereal crops rice and wheat was demonstrated and forward genetic screens were performed on mutagenised populations of wheat and Arabidopsis to identify genes regulating root GSA. Two wheat mutants were identified that maintained their altered root angles in a field trial. In Arabidopsis, a dominant point mutation was found, in a conserved region of a gene that has been previously demonstrated to regulate GSA in rice, that resulted in more vertical lateral roots. These novel genetic resources could be used to enhance nutrient and water acquisition in food crops resulting in improved yields to meet the needs of the growing world population.
Supervisor: Kepinski, Stefan ; Benitez Alfonso, Yoselin Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available