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Plant Cell Physiol. 2005 Aug;46(8):1350-7. Epub 2005 Jun 9.

Reactive oxygen species and root hairs in Arabidopsis root response to nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium deficiency.

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Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, 975 North Warson Rd, St Louis, MO 63132, USA.


Plant root sensing and adaptation to changes in the nutrient status of soils is vital for long-term productivity and growth. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) have been shown to play a role in root response to potassium deprivation. To determine the role of ROS in plant response to nitrogen and phosphorus deficiency, studies were conducted using wild-type Arabidopsis and several root hair mutants. The expression of several nutrient-responsive genes was determined by Northern blot, and ROS were quantified and localized in roots. The monitored genes varied in intensity and timing of expression depending on which nutrient was deficient. In response to nutrient deprivation, ROS concentrations increased in specific regions of the Arabidopsis root. Changes in ROS localization in Arabidopsis and in a set of root hair mutants suggest that the root hair cells are important for response to nitrogen and potassium. In contrast, the response to phosphorus deprivation occurs in the cortex where an increase in ROS was measured. Based on these results, we put forward the hypothesis that root hair cells in Arabidopsis contain a sensing system for nitrogen and potassium deprivation.

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