Rho of plant (ROP) proteins and the interactor of constitutively active ROP (ICR) family member ICR5/MIDD1 have been implicated to function as signaling modules that regulate metaxylem secondary cell wall patterning. Yet, loss-of-function mutants of ICR5 and its closest homologs have not been studied and, hence, the functions of these ICR family members are not fully established. Here, we studied the functions of ICR2 and its homolog ICR5. We show that ICR2 is a microtubule-associated protein that affects microtubule dynamics. Secondary cell wall pits in the metaxylem of Arabidopsis icr2 and icr5 single mutants and icr2 icr5 double mutants are smaller than those in wild-type Col-0 seedlings; however, they are remarkably denser, implying a complex function of ICRs in secondary cell wall patterning. ICR5 has a unique function in protoxylem secondary cell wall patterning, whereas icr2, but not icr5, mutants develop split root hairs, demonstrating functional diversification. Taken together, our results show that ICR2 and ICR5 have unique and cooperative functions as microtubule-associated proteins and as ROP effectors.
- Cell wall
- Root hair