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Root hairs are long tubular outgrowths that form on the surface of specialized epidermal cells. They are required for nutrient and water uptake and interact with the soil microflora. Here we show that the Oryza sativa cellulose synthase-like D1 (OsCSLD1) gene is required for root hair development, as rice (Oryza sativa) mutants that lack OsCSLD1 function develop abnormal root hairs. In these mutants, while hair development is initiated normally, the hairs elongate less than the wild-type hairs and they have kinks and swellings along their length. Because the csld1 mutants develop the same density and number of root hairs along their seminal root as the wild-type plants, we propose that OsCSLD1 function is required for hair elongation but not initiation. Both gene trap expression pattern and in situ hybridization analyses indicate that OsCSLD1 is expressed in only root hair cells. Furthermore, OsCSLD1 is the only member of the four rice CSLD genes that shows root-specific expression. Given that the Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) gene KOJAK/AtCSLD3 is required for root hair elongation and is expressed in the root hair, it appears that OsCSLD1 may be the functional ortholog of KOJAK/AtCSLD3 and that these two genes represent the root hair-specific members of this family of proteins. Thus, at least part of the mechanism of root hair morphogenesis in Arabidopsis is conserved in rice.

Original publication




Journal article


Plant Physiol

Publication Date





1220 - 1230


Base Sequence, Glucuronidase, Molecular Sequence Data, Morphogenesis, Mutagenesis, Insertional, Oryza, Plant Proteins, Plant Roots, RNA, Messenger