Arabidopsis root: A model organ in plant genomics

Book Section

Given their subterranean existence, roots could be considered among the most inaccessible organs for biological study. Fortunately, roots are extremely amenable to growth in the absence of soil; currently, Arabidopsis thaliana seedlings are extensively studied in non-soil media. This dicotyledonous seedling has several attributes that facilitate studies of root biology including rapid germination, small size, and simple root architecture. By the late 1980s, Arabidopsis was being widely used as a research model for plant biology. The Arabidopsis root was emerging as a particularly powerful and elegant model in cellular and organ developmental biology and environmental response. In the decade prior to publication of the Arabidopsis genome, functionally important molecules in root biology were identified through genetic screens. However, the difficulty of cloning the identified loci was a significant roadblock in understanding the molecular mechanisms driving root growth and development. The attributes that initially made the Arabidopsis root a good physiological and developmental model organ have made it invaluable in the genomics era.

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Van Norman, JM; Liberman, LM; Benfey, PN

Published Date

  • January 1, 2013

Book Title

  • Plant Roots: The Hidden Half, Fourth Edition

Start / End Page

  • 17 - 34

International Standard Book Number 13 (ISBN-13)

  • 9781439846483

Citation Source

  • Scopus