Auxin perception: in the IAA of the beholder



Auxin signaling through the SCFTIR1-Aux/IAA-ARF pathway is one of the best-studied plant hormone response pathways. Components of this pathway, from receptors through to transcription factors, have been identified and analyzed in detail. Although we understand elementary aspects of how the auxin signal is perceived and leads to a transcriptional response, many questions remain about the in vivo function of the pathway. Two crucial issues are the tissue specificity of the response, i.e. how distinct cell types can interpret the same auxin signal differently, and the response to a signaling gradient, i.e. how a graded distribution of auxin can elicit distinct expression patterns along its range. Here, we speculate on how signaling through the canonical SCFTIR1-Aux/IAA-ARF pathway may achieve divergent responses.