Casparian strips are precisely localized and aligned ring-like cell wall modifications in the root of all higher plants. They set up an extracellular diffusion barrier analogous to animal tight junctions, and are crucial for maintaining the homeostatic capacity of plant roots. Casparian strips become localized because of the formation of a highly stable plasma membrane domain, consisting of a family of small transmembrane proteins called Casparian strip membrane domain proteins (CASPs). Here we report a large-scale forward genetic screen directly visualizing endodermal barrier function, which allowed us to identify factors required for the formation and integrity of Casparian strips. We present the identification and characterization of one of the mutants, schengen1 (sgn1), a receptor-like cytoplasmic kinase that we show localizes in a strictly polar fashion to the outer plasma membrane of endodermal cells and is required for the positioning and correct formation of the centrally located CASP domain.
|Publication status||Published - 2016|