Cytokinin is an essential plant hormone that is involved in a wide range of plant growth and developmental processes which are controlled through its signalling pathway. Cytokinins are a class of molecules that are N6-substituted adenine derivatives, such as isopentenyl adenine, and trans- and cis-zeatin, which are common in most plants. The ability to perceive and respond to cytokinin occurs through a modified bacterial two-component pathway that functions via a multi-step phosphorelay. This cytokinin signalling process is a crucial part of almost all stages of plant life, from embryo patterning to apical meristem regulation, organ development and eventually senescence. The cytokinin signalling pathway involves the co-ordination of three types of proteins: histidine kinase receptors to perceive the signal, histidine phosphotransfer proteins to relay the signal, and response regulators to provide signal output. This pathway contains both positive and negative elements that function in a complex co-ordinated manner to control cytokinin-regulated plant responses. Although much is known about how this cytokinin signal is perceived and initially regulated, there are still many avenues that need to be explored before the role of cytokinin in the control of plant processes is fully understood.
- cytokinin-response factor
- histidine kinase
- histidine phosphotransfer protein
- multistep phosphorelay
- response regulator
- two-component signalling
- © 2015 Authors; published by Portland Press Limited