Glutamine, arginine and the amino acid transporter Pt-CAT11 play important roles during senescence in poplar.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Nitrogen (N) availability in the forest soil is extremely low and N economy has a special importance in woody plants that are able to cope with seasonal periods of growth and development over many years. Here we report on the analysis of amino acid pools and expression of key genes in the perennial species Populus trichocarpa during autumn senescence. METHODS: Amino acid pools were measured throughout senescence. Expression analysis of arginine synthesis genes and cationic amino acid transporter (CAT) genes during senescence was performed. Heterologous expression in yeast mutants was performed to study Pt-CAT11 function in detail. KEY RESULTS: Analysis of amino acid pools showed an increase of glutamine in leaves and an accumulation of arginine in stems during senescence. Expression of arginine biosynthesis genes suggests that arginine was preferentially synthesized from glutamine in perennial tissues. Pt-CAT11 expression increased in senescing leaves and functional characterization demonstrated that Pt-CAT11 transports glutamine. CONCLUSIONS: The present study established a relationship between glutamine synthesized in leaves and arginine synthesized in stems during senescence, arginine being accumulated as an N storage compound in perennial tissues such as stems. In this context, Pt-CAT11 may have a key role in N remobilization during senescence in poplar, by facilitating glutamine loading into phloem vessels.
Project description:Improving nitrogen (N) remobilization from aboveground to underground organs during yearly shoot senescence is an important goal for sustainable production of switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) as a biofuel crop. Little is known about the genetic control of senescence and N use efficiency in perennial grasses such as switchgrass, which limits our ability to improve the process. Switchgrass aboveground organs (leaves, stems and inflorescences) and underground organs (crowns and roots) were harvested every month over a 3-yr period. Transcriptome analysis was performed to identify genes differentially expressed in various organs during development. Total N content in aboveground organs increased from spring until the end of summer, then decreased concomitant with senescence, while N content in underground organs exhibited an increase roughly matching the decrease in shoot N during fall. Hundreds of senescence-associated genes were identified in leaves and stems. Functional grouping indicated that regulation of transcription and protein degradation play important roles in shoot senescence. Coexpression networks predict important roles for five switchgrass NAC (NAM, ATAF1,2, CUC2) transcription factors (TFs) and other TF family members in orchestrating metabolism of carbohydrates, N and lipids, protein modification/degradation, and transport processes during senescence. This study establishes a molecular basis for understanding and enhancing N remobilization and conservation in switchgrass.
Project description:A new technique for the determination of rate constants of protein degradation is described. By using the method, half-lives of total soluble protein of Lemna minor during growth on full culture medium and distilled water were measured. The method involves incubating Lemna on a growth medium containing 3H2O. After a short exposure (20 min) to 3H-labelled culture medium, 3H was found in soluble amino acids, especially aspartate, glutamate, glutamine and alanine. After transfer to a 3H-free medium for 30 min, 80% of the 3H originally present in soluble amino acids was lost. These results suggest that 3H enters and leaves amino acids at the alpha-carbon atom, a conclusion supported by the observed labelling of glutamates. The exchange of H and 3H on the alpha-carbon atom is catalysed by transaminases and the speed of this exchange ensures that when the 3H2O is removed, the 3H in free amino acids is rapidly lost, thereby eliminating problems connected with metabolic pools and recycling. After an exposure of 20 min to 3H-labelled medium all protein amino acids, except for arginine, were found to be radioactive. The loss of radioactivity from protein amino acids was used to measure protein degradation.
Project description:Carbamoyl phosphate is a precursor for both arginine and pyrimidine biosynthesis. In Lactobacillus plantarum, carbamoyl phosphate is synthesized from glutamine, ATP, and carbon dioxide by two sets of identified genes encoding carbamoyl phosphate synthase (CPS). The expression of the carAB operon (encoding CPS-A) responds to arginine availability, whereas pyrAaAb (encoding CPS-P) is part of the pyrR1BCAaAbDFE operon coding for the de novo pyrimidine pathway repressed by exogenous uracil. The pyr operon is regulated by transcription attenuation mediated by a trans-acting repressor that binds to the pyr mRNA attenuation site in response to intracellular UMP/phosphoribosyl pyrophosphate pools. Intracellular pyrimidine triphosphate nucleoside pools were lower in mutant FB335 (carAB deletion) harboring only CPS-P than in the wild-type strain harboring both CPS-A and CPS-P. Thus, CPS-P activity is the limiting step in pyrimidine synthesis. FB335 is unable to grow in the presence of uracil due to a lack of sufficient carbamoyl phosphate required for arginine biosynthesis. Forty independent spontaneous FB335-derived mutants that have lost regulation of the pyr operon were readily obtained by their ability to grow in the presence of uracil and absence of arginine; 26 harbored mutations in the pyrR1-pyrB loci. One was a prototroph with a deletion of both pyrR1 and the transcription attenuation site that resulted in large amounts of excreted pyrimidine nucleotides and increased intracellular UTP and CTP pools compared to wild-type levels. Low pyrimidine-independent expression of the pyr operon was obtained by antiterminator site-directed mutagenesis. The resulting AE1023 strain had reduced UTP and CTP pools and had the phenotype of a high-CO2-requiring auxotroph, since it was able to synthesize sufficient arginine and pyrimidines only in CO2-enriched air. Therefore, growth inhibition without CO2 enrichment may be due to low carbamoyl phosphate pools from lack of CPS activity.
Project description:Dehalococcoides species are key players in the anaerobic transformation of halogenated solvents at contaminated sites. Here, we analyze isotopologue distributions in amino acid pools from peptides of Dehalococcoides strain CBDB1 after incubation with (13)C-labeled acetate or bicarbonate as a carbon source. The resulting data were interpreted with regard to genome annotations to identify amino acid biosynthesis pathways. In addition to using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) for analyzing derivatized amino acids after protein hydrolysis, we introduce a second, much milder method, in which we directly analyze peptide masses after tryptic digest and peptide fragments by nano-liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometry (nano-LC-ESI-MS/MS). With this method, we identify isotope incorporation patterns for 17 proteinaceous amino acids, including proline, cysteine, lysine, and arginine, which escaped previous analyses in Dehalococcoides. Our results confirmed lysine biosynthesis via the ?-aminoadipate pathway, precluding lysine formation from aspartate. Similarly, the isotopologue pattern obtained for arginine provided biochemical evidence of its synthesis from glutamate. Direct peptide MS/MS analysis of the labeling patterns of glutamine and asparagine, which were converted to glutamate and aspartate during protein hydrolysis, gave biochemical evidence of their precursors and confirmed glutamate biosynthesis via a Re-specific citrate synthase. By addition of unlabeled free amino acids to labeled cells, we show that in strain CBDB1 none of the 17 tested amino acids was incorporated into cell mass, indicating that they are all synthesized de novo. Our approach is widely applicable and provides a means to analyze amino acid metabolism by studying specific proteins even in mixed consortia.
Project description:Glutamine synthetase and asparagine synthetase are two master enzymes involved in ammonium assimilation in plants. Their roles in nitrogen remobilization and nitrogen use efficiency have been proposed. In this report, the genes coding for the cytosolic glutamine synthetases (HvGS1) and asparagine synthetases (HvASN) in barley were identified. In addition to the three HvGS1 and two HvASN sequences previously reported, two prokaryotic-like HvGS1 and three HvASN cDNA sequences were identified. Gene structures were then characterized, obtaining full genomic sequences. The response of the five HvGS1 and five HvASN genes to leaf senescence was then studied. Developmental senescence was studied using primary and flag leaves. Dark-exposure or low-nitrate conditions were also used to trigger stress-induced senescence. Well-known senescence markers such as the chlorophyll and Rubisco contents were monitored in order to characterize senescence levels in the different leaves. The three eukaryotic-like HvGS1_1, HvGS1_2, and HvGS1_3 sequences showed the typical senescence-induced reduction in gene expression described in many plant species. By contrast, the two prokaryotic-like HvGS1_4 and HvGS1_5 sequences were repressed by leaf senescence, similar to the HvGS2 gene, which encodes the chloroplast glutamine synthetase isoenzyme. There was a greater contrast in the responses of the five HvASN and this suggested that these genes are needed for N remobilization in senescing leaves only when plants are well fertilized with nitrate. Responses of the HvASN sequences to dark-induced senescence showed that there are two categories of asparagine synthetases, one induced in the dark and the other repressed by the same conditions.
Project description:It has been reported that supply of nitrate to culture solution rapidly and reversibly inhibits nodule growth and nitrogen fixation activity of soybean. In this study, the effects of ammonium, urea, or glutamine on nodule growth and nitrogen fixation activity are compared with that for nitrate. Soybean plants were cultivated with a nitrogen-free nutrient solution, then 1 mM-N of nitrate, ammonium, glutamine, or urea were supplied from 12 DAP until 17 DAP. Repression of nodule growth and nitrogen fixation activity at 17 DAP were observed by ammonium, urea, and glutamine like nitrate, although the inhibitory effects were milder than nitrate. The removal of nitrogen from the culture solutions after nitrogen treatments resulted in a recovery of the nodule growth. It was found that the glutamine treatment followed by N-free cultivation gave highest nitrogen fixation activity about two times of the control. Tracer experiments with 15N and 13C were performed to evaluate the translocation of N and C to the different tissues. Culture solutions containing a 15N-labeled nitrogen source were supplied from 21 DAP, and the whole shoots were exposed to 13CO2 for 60 min on 23 DAP, and plants were harvested on 24 DAP. The percentage distribution of 15N in nodules was highest for ammonium (1.4%) followed by glutamine (0.78%), urea (0.32%) and nitrate (0.25%). The percentage distribution of 13C in the nodules was highest for the control (11.5%) followed by urea (5.8%), glutamine (2.6%), ammonium (2.3%), and nitrate (2.3%). The inhibitory effects of nitrogen compounds appeared to be related to a decrease in photoassimilate partitioning in the nodules, rather than 15N transport into the nodules. The free amino acid concentrations after nitrogen treatments were increased in the nodules and leaves by nitrate, in the roots by ammonium, in the stems by urea, and the roots, stems, and leaves by glutamine treatment. The concentrations of asparagine, aspartate, and glutamine were increased after nitrogen treatments. By the long-term supply of nitrogen for 2-weeks, nitrate significantly increased the lateral roots and leaf growth. The long-term supply of urea and glutamine also promoted the lateral roots and leaf growth, but ammonium suppressed them.
Project description:Senescence is the final stage of leaf growth and development. Many different physiological activities occur during this process. A comprehensive metabolomics analysis of tobacco middle leaves at 5 different developmental stages was implemented through multi-platform methods based on liquid chromatography, capillary electrophoresis and gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry. In total, 412 metabolites were identified, including pigments, sterols, lipids, amino acids, polyamines, sugars and secondary metabolites. Dramatic metabolic changes were observed. Firstly, membrane degradation and chlorophyll down-regulation occurred after the 50% flower bud stage. Levels of major membrane lipids decreased, including those of the glycolipids in chloroplast thylakoids and phospholipids in membrane envelopes. Clear decreases in free sterols and acylated sterol glucosides were detected along with the accumulation of sterol esters. The accumulation of alkaloids was found. The amino acid levels were significantly decreased, particularly those of N-rich amino acids (glutamine and asparagine), thus reflecting N translocation. Subsequently, the antioxidant system was activated. Sugar alcohols and polyphenols accumulated when the lower leaves turned yellow. These results comprehensively revealed the metabolic changes that occur during tobacco leaf development and senescence under natural conditions.
Project description:Stable isotope labeling by amino acids in cell culture (SILAC) provides a straightforward tool for quantitation in proteomics. However, one problem associated with SILAC is the in vivo conversion of labeled arginine to other amino acids, typically proline. We found that arginine conversion in the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe occurred at extremely high levels, such that labeling cells with heavy arginine led to undesired incorporation of label into essentially all of the proline pool as well as a substantial portion of glutamate, glutamine, and lysine pools. We found that this can be prevented by deleting genes involved in arginine catabolism using methods that are highly robust yet simple to implement. Deletion of both fission yeast arginase genes or of the single ornithine transaminase gene, together with a small modification to growth medium that improves arginine uptake in mutant strains, was sufficient to abolish essentially all arginine conversion. We demonstrated the usefulness of our approach in a large scale quantitative analysis of proteins before and after cell division; both up- and down-regulated proteins, including a novel protein involved in septation, were successfully identified. This strategy for addressing the "arginine conversion problem" may be more broadly applicable to organisms amenable to genetic manipulation.
Project description:A total of 16 BnaGLN1 genes coding for cytosolic glutamine synthetase isoforms (EC 184.108.40.206.) were found in the Brassica napus genome. The total number of BnaGLN1 genes, their phylogenetic relationships, and genetic locations are in agreement with the evolutionary history of Brassica species. Two BnaGLN1.1, two BnaGLN1.2, six BnaGLN1.3, four BnaGLN1.4, and two BnaGLN1.5 genes were found and named according to the standardized nomenclature for the Brassica genus. Gene expression showed conserved responses to nitrogen availability and leaf senescence among the Brassiceae tribe. The BnaGLN1.1 and BnaGLN1.4 families are overexpressed during leaf senescence and in response to nitrogen limitation. The BnaGLN1.2 family is up-regulated under high nitrogen regimes. The members of the BnaGLN1.3 family are not affected by nitrogen availability and are more expressed in stems than in leaves. Expression of the two BnaGLN1.5 genes is almost undetectable in vegetative tissues. Regulations arising from plant interactions with their environment (such as nitrogen resources), final architecture, and therefore sink-source relations in planta, seem to be globally conserved between Arabidopsis and B. napus. Similarities of the coding sequence (CDS) and protein sequences, expression profiles, response to nitrogen availability, and ageing suggest that the roles of the different GLN1 families have been conserved among the Brassiceae tribe. These findings are encouraging the transfer of knowledge from the Arabidopsis model plant to the B. napus crop plant. They are of special interest when considering the role of glutamine synthetase in crop yield and grain quality in maize and wheat.
Project description:In contrast to aboveground organs (stems and leaves), developmental events and their regulation in underground organs, such as pioneer and fine roots, are quite poorly understood. The objective of the current study was to achieve a better understanding of the physiological and molecular role of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and ROS-related enzymes in the process of stem and pioneer root development in black cottonwood (Populus trichocarpa), as well as in the senescence of leaves and fine roots. Results of a transcriptomic analysis revealed that primary/secondary growth and senescence are accompanied by substantial changes in the expression of genes related to oxidative stress metabolism. We observed that some mechanisms common for above- and under-ground organs, e.g., the expression of superoxide dismutase (SOD) genes and SOD activity, declined during stems' and pioneer roots' development. Moreover, the localization of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and superoxide (O2•-) in the primary and secondary xylem of stems and pioneer roots confirms their involvement in xylem cell wall lignification and the induction of programmed cell death (PCD). H2O2 and O2•- in senescing fine roots were present in the same locations as demonstrated previously for ATG8 (AuTophaGy-related) proteins, implying their participation in cell degradation during senescence, while O2•- in older leaves was also localized similarly to ATG8 in chloroplasts, suggesting their role in chlorophagy. ROS and ROS-related enzymes play an integral role in the lignification of xylem cell walls in Populus trichocarpa, as well as the induction of PCD during xylogenesis and senescence.