Nitrate signaling and early responses in Arabidopsis roots

Soledad F. Undurraga, Catalina Ibarra-Henríquez, Isabel Fredes, José Miguel Álvarez, Rodrigo A. Gutiérrez

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

52 Citations (Scopus)


Nitrogen (N) is an essential macronutrient that impacts many aspects of plant physiology, growth, and development. Besides its nutritional role, N nutrient and metabolites act as signaling molecules that regulate the expression of a wide range of genes and biological processes. In this review, we describe recent advances in the understanding of components of the nitrate signaling pathway. Recent evidence posits that in one nitrate signaling pathway, nitrate sensed by NRT1.1 activates a phospholipase C activity that is necessary for increased cytosolic calcium levels. The nitrate-elicited calcium increase presumably activates calcium sensors, kinases, or phosphatases, resulting in changes in expression of primary nitrate response genes. Consistent with this model, nitrate treatments elicit proteome-wide changes in phosphorylation patterns in a wide range of proteins, including transporters, metabolic enzymes, kinases, phosphatases, and other regulatory proteins. Identifying and characterizing the function of the different players involved in this and other nitrate signaling pathways and their functional relationships is the next step to understand N responses in plants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2541-2551
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Experimental Botany
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Gene expression
  • nitrate
  • nitrogen
  • phospholipase C
  • phosphorylation
  • primary response
  • signaling.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Plant Science


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