Shoot control of root development and nodulation is mediated by a receptor-like kinase

Nature. 2002 Nov 28;420(6914):422-6. doi: 10.1038/nature01207. Epub 2002 Nov 6.


In legumes, root nodule organogenesis is activated in response to morphogenic lipochitin oligosaccharides that are synthesized by bacteria, commonly known as rhizobia. Successful symbiotic interaction results in the formation of highly specialized organs called root nodules, which provide a unique environment for symbiotic nitrogen fixation. In wild-type plants the number of nodules is regulated by a signalling mechanism integrating environmental and developmental cues to arrest most rhizobial infections within the susceptible zone of the root. Furthermore, a feedback mechanism controls the temporal and spatial susceptibility to infection of the root system. This mechanism is referred to as autoregulation of nodulation, as earlier nodulation events inhibit nodulation of younger root tissues. Lotus japonicus plants homozygous for a mutation in the hypernodulation aberrant root (har1) locus escape this regulation and form an excessive number of nodules. Here we report the molecular cloning and expression analysis of the HAR1 gene and the pea orthologue, Pisum sativum, SYM29. HAR1 encodes a putative serine/threonine receptor kinase, which is required for shoot-controlled regulation of root growth, nodule number, and for nitrate sensitivity of symbiotic development.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Alleles
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Feedback, Physiological
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Genes, Plant / genetics
  • Lotus / enzymology*
  • Lotus / genetics
  • Lotus / metabolism
  • Lotus / microbiology
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mutation / genetics
  • Nitrogen Fixation* / genetics
  • Peas / enzymology
  • Peas / genetics
  • Plant Roots / enzymology
  • Plant Roots / genetics
  • Plant Roots / metabolism*
  • Plant Roots / microbiology
  • Plant Shoots / enzymology
  • Plant Shoots / genetics
  • Plant Shoots / metabolism*
  • Plant Shoots / microbiology
  • Protein Structure, Tertiary
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases / chemistry
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases / genetics
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases / metabolism*
  • Rhizobium / physiology
  • Symbiosis / genetics


  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases

Associated data

  • GENBANK/AF197946
  • GENBANK/AF197947
  • GENBANK/AJ495759
  • GENBANK/AJ495843
  • GENBANK/AJ495844
  • GENBANK/AP005665
  • GENBANK/AP005666
  • GENBANK/AP005667