Table of Contents
Advances in Botany
Volume 2015, Article ID 419428, 13 pages
Review Article

Shaping the Arabidopsis Transcriptome through Alternative Splicing

Molecular Cell Physiology, Faculty of Biology, Bielefeld University, Universitaetsstrasse 25, 33615 Bielefeld, Germany

Received 16 November 2014; Accepted 17 January 2015

Academic Editor: Tomotsugu Koyama

Copyright © 2015 Dorothee Staiger. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Alternative splicing is a molecular tool of the cell to generate more than one messenger RNA from the same gene. Through variable combinations of exons blueprints for different proteins are assembled from one and the same pre-messenger RNA, thus increasing the complexity of the proteome. Moreover, through alternative splicing different transcript variants with different stabilities and different regulatory motifs can be generated, leading to variation in the transcriptome. The importance of alternative splicing in plants has been increasingly recognized in the last decade. Alternative splicing has been found during abiotic and biotic stress and during development. Here, recent advancements in the understanding of alternative splicing in higher plants are presented. Mechanistic details and functional consequences of alternative splicing are discussed with a focus on the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana.