Display Settings:


Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Plant Physiol. 1989 Sep;91(1):304-9.

Tungstate, a molybdate analog inactivating nitrate reductase, deregulates the expression of the nitrate reductase structural gene.

Author information

  • 1Laboratoire de Biologie Cellulaire, INRA, 78026 Versailles, France.


Nitrate reductase (NR, EC from higher plants is a homodimeric enzyme carrying a molybdenum cofactor at the catalytic site. Tungsten can be substituted for molybdenum in the cofactor structure, resulting in an inactive enzyme. When nitratefed Nicotiana tabacum plants were grown on a nutrient solution in which tungstate was substituted for molybdate, NR activity in the leaves decreased to a very low level within 24 hours while NR protein accumulated progressively to a level severalfold higher than the control after 6 days. NR mRNA level in molybdate-grown plants exhibited a considerable day-night fluctuation. However, when plants were treated with tungstate, NR mRNA level remained very high. NR activity and protein increased over a 24-hour period when nitrate was added back to N-starved molybdate-grown plants. NR mRNA level increased markedly during the first 2 hours and then decreased. In the presence of tungstate, however, the induction of NR activity by nitrate was totally abolished while high levels of NR protein and mRNA were both induced, and the high level of NR mRNA was maintained over a 10-hour period. These results suggest that the substitution of tungsten for molybdenum in NR complex leads to an overexpression of the NR structural gene. Possible mechanisms involved in this deregulation are discussed.

Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk