SAUR Proteins as Effectors of Hormonal and Environmental Signals in Plant Growth

Hong Ren, William M. Gray

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

341 Scopus citations


Abstract The plant hormone auxin regulates numerous aspects of plant growth and development. Early auxin response genes mediate its genomic effects on plant growth and development. Discovered in 1987, SMALL AUXIN UP RNAs (SAURs) are the largest family of early auxin response genes. SAUR functions have remained elusive, however, presumably due to extensive genetic redundancy. However, recent molecular, genetic, biochemical, and genomic studies have implicated SAURs in the regulation of a wide range of cellular, physiological, and developmental processes. Recently, crucial mechanistic insight into SAUR function was provided by the demonstration that SAURs inhibit PP2C.D phosphatases to activate plasma membrane (PM) H+-ATPases and promote cell expansion. In addition to auxin, several other hormones and environmental factors also regulate SAUR gene expression. We propose that SAURs are key effector outputs of hormonal and environmental signals that regulate plant growth and development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number134
Pages (from-to)1153-1164
Number of pages12
JournalMolecular Plant
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 3 2015

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by grants to WMG from the National Institutes of Health ( GM067203 ) and National Science Foundation ( MCB-0817205 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 The Author.


  • Key words auxin
  • PM H-ATPases
  • PP2C.D phosphatases
  • SAURs
  • acid growth
  • cell expansion


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