SAUR53 Regulates Organ Elongation and Apical Hook Development in Arabidopsis
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SAUR53 is a member of SAUR (Small Auxin-Up RNA) gene family of primary auxin responsive genes. In Arabidopsis, SAUR gene family is represented by 81 genes including two pseudogenes; however, the functions of most of these genes are not fully characterized yet. In the present study, we show that SAUR53 expresses throughout the plant and localizes to both plasma membrane and the nucleus. Unlike most other SAUR genes, expression of SAUR53 is not induced in response to auxin. Ectopic expression of SAUR53 results in the elongation of cells and organs, and also interferes with normal apical hook development by accelerating the hook maintenance phase. Moreover, root growth of SAUR53 overexpression seedlings is significantly insensitive to IAA and 2,4-D, while showing wild-type sensitivity to NAA, suggesting that elevated level of SAUR53 may interfere with normal auxin transport. Collectively, this study indicates that while SAUR53 positively regulates cell and organ elongation, it probably negatively regulates auxin transport in Arabidopsis.