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Light remote control of alternative splicing in roots through TOR kinase

By Stefan Riegler, Lucas Servi, Armin Fuchs, Micaela A. Godoy Herz, MarĂ­a G. Kubaczka, Peter Venhuizen, Alois Schweighofer, Craig Simpson, John W.S. Brown, Christian Meyer, Maria Kalyna, Andrea Barta, Ezequiel Petrillo

Posted 19 Nov 2018
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/472126

For plants, light is the source of energy and the most relevant regulator of growth and adaptations to the environment by inducing changes in gene expression at various levels, including alternative splicing. Chloroplasts trigger retrograde signals that control alternative splicing in leaves and roots in response to light. Here we provide evidence suggesting that sugars, derived from photosynthesis, act as mobile signals controlling alternative splicing in roots. The inhibition of TOR kinase activity diminishes the alternative splicing response to light and/or sugars in roots, showing the relevance of the TOR pathway in this signaling mechanism. Furthermore, disrupting the function of the mitochondria abolishes alternative splicing changes supporting a key role for these organelles in this signaling axis. We conclude that sugars can act as mobile signals coordinating alternative splicing responses to light throughout the whole plant, exerting this function in roots by activating the TOR pathway.

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