J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 2022, Vol. 64 ›› Issue (4): 792-811.DOI: 10.1111/jipb.13230

• Invited Expert Review • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Circadian clock in plants: Linking timing to fitness

Xiaodong Xu1*, Li Yuan1, Xin Yang1, Xiao Zhang1, Lei Wang2 and Qiguang Xie1*   

  1. 1 State Key Laboratory of Crop Stress Adaptation and Improvement, School of Life Sciences, Henan University, Kaifeng 475004, China
    2 Key Laboratory of Plant Molecular Physiology, Institute of Botany, The Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100093, China

    Correspondences: Xiaodong Xu (xiaodong.xu@henu.edu.cn, Dr. Xu is fully responsible for the distributions of all materials associated with this article);Qiguang Xie (qiguang.xie@henu.edu.cn)
  • Received:2021-11-19 Accepted:2022-01-25 Online:2022-01-28 Published:2022-04-01

Abstract: Endogenous circadian clock integrates cyclic signals of environment and daily and seasonal behaviors of organisms to achieve spatiotemporal synchronization, which greatly improves genetic diversity and fitness of species. This review addresses recent studies on the plant circadian system in the field of chronobiology, covering topics on molecular mechanisms, internal and external Zeitgebers, and hierarchical regulation of physiological outputs. The architecture of the circadian clock involves the autoregulatory transcriptional feedback loops, post-translational modifications of core oscillators, and epigenetic modifications of DNA and histones. Here, light, temperature, humidity, and internal elemental nutrients are summarized to illustrate the sensitivity of the circadian clock to timing cues. In addition, the circadian clock runs cell-autonomously, driving independent circadian rhythms in various tissues. The core oscillators responds to each other with biochemical factors including calcium ions, mineral nutrients, photosynthetic products, and hormones. We describe clock components sequentially expressed during a 24-h day that regulate rhythmic growth, aging, immune response, and resistance to biotic and abiotic stresses. Notably, more data have suggested the circadian clock links chrono-culture to key agronomic traits in crops.

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