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Mol Gen Genet. 1996 Jun 24;251(4):461-71.

Isolation and characterization of two new negative regulatory mutants for nitrate assimilation in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii obtained by insertional mutagenesis.

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Departmento de Bioquimica y Biologia Molecular, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Córdoba, Spain.


Plasmid DNA carrying either the nitrate reductase (NR) gene or the argininosuccinate lyase gene as selectable markers and the corresponding Chlamydomonas reinhardtii mutants as recipient strains have been used to isolate regulatory mutants for nitrate assimilation by insertional mutagenesis. Identification of putative regulatory mutants was based on their chlorate sensitivity in the presence of ammonium. Among 8975 transformants, two mutants, N1 and T1, were obtained. Genetic characterization of these mutants indicated that they carry recessive mutations at two different loci, named Nrg1 and Nrg2. The mutation in N1 was shown to be linked to the plasmid insertion. Two copies of the nitrate reductase plasmid, one of them truncated, were inserted in the N1 genome in inverse orientation. In addition to the chlorate sensitivity phenotype in the presence of ammonium, these mutants expressed NR, nitrite reductase and nitrate transport activities in ammonium-nitrate media. Kinetic constants for ammonium (I4C-methylammonium) transport, as well as enzymatic activities related to the ammonium-regulated metabolic pathway for xanthine utilization, were not affected in these strains. The data strongly suggest that Nrg1 and Nrg2 are regulatory genes which specifically mediate the negative control exerted by ammonium on the nitrate assimilation pathway in C. reinhardtii.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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