Campus Units

Plant Pathology and Microbiology

Document Type


Publication Version

Accepted Manuscript

Publication Date


Journal or Book Title

Journal of Experimental Botany




Growth-Regulating Factors (GRFs) belong to a small family of transcription factors that are highly conserved in plants. GRFs regulate many developmental processes and plant responses to biotic and abiotic stimuli. Despite the importance of GRFs, a detailed mechanistic understanding of their regulatory functions remains lacking. In this study, we used chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing (ChIP-seq) to identify genome-wide binding sites of Arabidopsis GRF1 and GRF3 and correspondingly their direct downstream target genes. RNAsequencing (RNA-seq) analysis revealed that GRF1 and GRF3 regulate the expression of a significant number of the identified direct targets. The target genes unveiled broad regulatory functions of GRF1 and GRF3 in plant growth and development, phytohormone biosynthesis and signaling, and the cell cycle. Our analyses also revealed that clock core genes and genes with stress- and defense-related functions are most predominant among the GRF1- and GRF3-bound targets, providing insights into a possible role of these transcription factors in mediating growthdefense antagonism and integrating environmental stimuli into developmental programs. Additionally, GRF1 and GRF3 target molecular nodes of growth-defense antagonism and modulate the levels of defense- and development-related hormones in opposite directions. Taken together, our results point at GRF1 and GRF3 as potential key determinants of plant fitness under stress conditions.


This is a manuscript of an article published as Piya, Sarbottam, Jinyi Liu, Tessa Burch-Smith, Thomas J. Baum, and Tarek Hewezi. "The roles of Arabidopsis Growth-Regulating Factors 1 and 3 in growth-stress antagonism." Journal of experimental botany (2019). doi: 10.1093/jxb/erz502. Posted with permission.

Copyright Owner

The Authors



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Available for download on Sunday, November 08, 2020

Published Version