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Metallomics. 2013 Sep;5(9):1170-83. doi: 10.1039/c3mt20223b.

An update on magnesium homeostasis mechanisms in plants.

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Laboratory of Plant Physiology and Molecular Genetics, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Campus Plaine CP 242, Bd du Triomphe, 1050 Brussels, Belgium.


Worldwide, nearly two-thirds of the population do not consume the recommended amount of magnesium (Mg) in their diet. Furthermore, low Mg status (hypomagnesaemia) is known to contribute to a number of human chronic disease conditions. Because the principal dietary Mg source is of plant origin, agronomic and genetic biofortification strategies are aimed at improving nutritional Mg content in food crops to overcome this mineral deficiency in humans. This update incorporates the contributions of annotated permeases involved in Mg uptake, storage and recycling with a schematic model of Mg movement at the organ and cellular levels in the model species Arabidopsis thaliana. Furthermore, approaches using mutagenesis or natural ionomic variation to identify loci involved in Mg homeostasis in roots, leaves and seeds will be summarised. A brief overview will be presented on how Arabidopsis research can help to develop strategies for biofortification of crops.

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