Surprisingly little is known about molecular mechanisms by which nitrogen (N) availability acts to modulate the growth of forest trees. To address this issue, differential display was used in conjunction with filter-based arrays to identify 52 partial cDNA clones that were significantly regulated within days in response to limiting or luxuriant levels of NH4NO3 fertilization in Populus trichocarpa Torr. & Gray x deltoides Bartr. ex Marsh. A subset of these cDNAs also demonstrated shifts in expression patterns in stemgirdled trees, a manipulative physiology technique that disrupts phloem transport. Stem girdling also induced changes in glutamine and asparagine pools which were correlated with the observed changes in expression profiles for these genes. The identity of these genes provides insight into biochemical processes that are altered by N availability in poplar. Carbon-nitrogen interactions appear to figure prominently in the N-response. The gene expression data suggest that N availability modulates the partitioning of C and N resources into metabolic fates that have the potential to alter both wood quality and quantity, including synthesis of vegetative storage proteins, cell wall components, and terpenoids.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Plant Science