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Keywords:

  • Arabidopsis thaliana ;
  • organ size;
  • evolution;
  • leaf development;
  • proteasome;
  • gene regulatory network

Summary

In both animal and plant kingdoms, body size is a fundamental but still poorly understood attribute of biological systems. Here we report that the Arabidopsis NAC transcription factor ‘Regulator of Proteasomal Gene Expression’ (RPX) controls leaf size by positively modulating proteasome activity. We further show that the cis-element recognized by RPX is evolutionarily conserved between higher plant species. Upon over-expression of RPX, plants exhibit reduced growth, which may be reversed by a low concentration of the pharmacological proteasome inhibitor MG132. These data suggest that the rate of protein turnover during growth is a critical parameter for determining final organ size.