Nitrate transporters in plants: structure, function and regulation

Biochim Biophys Acta. 2000 May 1;1465(1-2):219-35. doi: 10.1016/s0005-2736(00)00140-1.


Physiological studies have established that plants acquire their NO(-3) from the soil through the combined activities of a set of high- and low-affinity NO(-3) transport systems, with the influx of NO(-3) being driven by the H(+) gradient across the plasma membrane. Some of these NO(-3) transport systems are constitutively expressed, while others are NO(-3)-inducible and subject to negative feedback regulation by the products of NO(-3) assimilation. Here we review recent progress in the characterisation of the two families of NO(-3) transporters that have so far been identified in plants, their structure and their regulation, and consider the evidence for their roles in NO(-3) acquisition. We also discuss what is currently known about the genetic basis of NO(-3) induction and feedback repression of the NO(-3) transport and assimilatory pathway in higher plants.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anion Transport Proteins*
  • Arabidopsis Proteins*
  • Biological Transport, Active
  • Carrier Proteins / chemistry
  • Carrier Proteins / genetics
  • Carrier Proteins / metabolism*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Molecular Structure
  • Nitrates / metabolism*
  • Phylogeny
  • Plant Proteins / chemistry
  • Plant Proteins / genetics
  • Plant Proteins / metabolism*
  • Proton-Translocating ATPases / metabolism


  • Anion Transport Proteins
  • Arabidopsis Proteins
  • Carrier Proteins
  • NRT1.1 protein, Arabidopsis
  • NRT2 protein, Arabidopsis
  • Nitrates
  • Plant Proteins
  • nitrate transporters
  • Proton-Translocating ATPases