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UVR8 disrupts stabilisation of PIF5 by COP1 to inhibit plant stem elongation in sunlight

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
JournalNature Communications
Issue number4417
DateAccepted/In press - 3 Sep 2019
DatePublished (current) - 27 Sep 2019


Alterations in light quality significantly affect plant growth and development. In canopy shade, phytochrome photoreceptors perceive reduced ratios of red to far-red light (R:FR) and initiate stem elongation to enable plants to overtop competitors. This shade avoidance response is achieved via the stabilisation and activation of PHYTOCHROME INTERACTING FACTORs (PIFs) which elevate auxin biosynthesis. UV-B inhibits shade avoidance by reducing the abundance and activity of PIFs, yet the molecular mechanisms controlling PIF abundance in UV-B are unknown. Here we show that the UV-B photoreceptor UVR8 promotes rapid PIF5 degradation via the ubiquitin-proteasome system in a response requiring the N terminus of PIF5. In planta interactions between UVR8 and PIF5 are not observed. We further demonstrate that PIF5 interacts with the E3 ligase COP1, promoting PIF5 stabilisation in light-grown plants. Binding of UVR8 to COP1 in UV-B disrupts this stabilisation, providing a mechanism to rapidly lower PIF5 abundance in sunlight.

    Research areas

  • UVR8, COP1, PIF5, sunlight, shade avoidance



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    Licence: CC BY


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