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Seed germination and early seedling growth are regulated by an intricate network of hormonal signaling pathways. The plant hormones gibberellic acid (GA) and abscisic acid (ABA) are particularly important positive and negative regulators of these processes, respectively. In the cereal rice, mutant analysis has implicated heterotrimeric guanine nucleotide–binding protein (G protein) signaling in GA-stimulated expression of several genes, including expression of the gene encoding the hydrolytic enzyme α-amylase, which breaks down carbohydrate reserves and thus mobilizes nutrients that nourish the young seedling.
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