Honors Program Thesis (UNI Access Only)

First Advisor

Julie Kang


Little is understood regarding the development and evolution of leaf shape and vein pattern. As a result, many mechanisms of plant growth and adaptation remain unknown. The purpose of this study is to determine the relationship between leaf marginal serrations and secondary veins in Arabidopsis thaliana. The effects of ICK1, an Inhibitor of Cyclin-Dependent Kinase1, on cell cycling in Arabidopsis leaf mutants (ASYMMETRIC 2-1, FILAMENTOUS FLOWER-5, CUP-SHAPED COTYLEDON 2-1) were studied by fusing leaf and vascular specific promoters (pAtHB8, pAS2, pFIL, pCUC2) to ICK1. Screening via polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was conducted to determine the presence of the introduced genes. Leaf 8 was collected from each positively expressing transgenic plant, cleared, and examined using a stereomicroscope. Scanning electron microscopy was employed to analyze the deep marginal serrations present in the leaves of 35S::ICK1 plants, transgenic plants expressing ICK1 driven by the 35S promoter. The overexpression of ICK1 was found to increase the depth of marginal serrations while decreasing the number of serrations, overall leaf areas, total cell numbers, and vein densities. In addition, the localized inhibition of cell proliferation affected leaf margins, sizes, and vein densities. These results suggest that the loss of serrations induced by the inhibition of cell division is directly related to the loss of secondary veins in Arabidopsis leaves.

Date of Award



Department of Biology

University Honors Designation

A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the designation University Honors

Date Original


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1 PDF file (32 pages)



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