[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The integration of cell division in root growth and development requires mediation of developmental and physiological signals through regulation of cyclin-dependent kinase activity. Cells within the pericycle form de novo lateral root meristems, and D-type cyclins (CYCD), as regulators of the G₁-to-S phase cell cycle transition, are anticipated to play a role. Here, we show that the D-type cyclin protein CYCD2;1 is nuclear in Arabidopsis thaliana root cells, with the highest concentration in apical and lateral meristems. Loss of CYCD2;1 has a marginal effect on unstimulated lateral root density, but CYCD2;1 is rate-limiting for the response to low levels of exogenous auxin. However, while CYCD2;1 expression requires sucrose, it does not respond to auxin. The protein Inhibitor-Interactor of CDK/Kip Related Protein2 (ICK2/KRP2), which interacts with CYCD2;1, inhibits lateral root formation, and ick2/krp2 mutants show increased lateral root density. ICK2/KRP2 can modulate the nuclear levels of CYCD2;1, and since auxin reduces ICK2/KRP2 protein levels, it affects both activity and cellular distribution of CYCD2;1. Hence, as ICK2/KRP2 levels decrease, the increase in lateral root density depends on CYCD2;1, irrespective of ICK2/CYCD2;1 nuclear localization. We propose that ICK2/KRP2 restrains root ramification by maintaining CYCD2;1 inactive and that this modulates pericycle responses to auxin fluctuations.