Molecular cloning and characterisation of asparagine synthetase from Lotus japonicus: dynamics of asparagine synthesis in N-sufficient conditions

Plant Mol Biol. 1996 Mar;30(5):883-97. doi: 10.1007/BF00020801.

Abstract

Two cDNA clones, LJAS1 and LJAS2, encoding different asparagine synthetases (AS) have been identified and sequenced and their expression in Lotus japonicus characterised. Analysis of predicted amino acid sequences indicted a high level of identity with other plant AS sequences. No other AS genes were detected in the L. japonicus genome. LJAS1 gene expression was found to be root-enhanced and lower levels of transcript were also identified in photosynthetic tissues. In contrast, LJAS2 gene expression was root-specific. These patterns of AS gene expression are different from those seen in pea. AS gene expression was monitored throughout a 16 h light/8 h dark day, under nitrate-sufficient conditions. Neither transcript showed the dark-enhanced accumulation patterns previously reported for other plant AS genes. To evaluate AS activity, the molecular dynamics of asparagine synthesis were examined in vivo using 15N-ammonium labelling. A constant rate of asparagine synthesis in the roots was observed. Asparagine was the most predominant amino-component of the xylem sap and became labelled at a slightly slower rate than the asparagine in the roots, indicating that most root asparagine was located in a cytoplasmic 'transport' pool rather than in a vacuolar 'storage' pool. The steady-state mRNA levels and the 15N-labelling data suggest that light regulation of AS gene expression is not a factor controlling N-assimilation in L. japonicus roots during stable growth in N-sufficient conditions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Amino Acids / metabolism
  • Asparagine / biosynthesis*
  • Aspartate-Ammonia Ligase / genetics*
  • Circadian Rhythm
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • DNA, Complementary
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Plant
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Nitrogen Isotopes
  • Plant Roots / metabolism
  • Plants / enzymology*
  • Plants / genetics
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid

Substances

  • Amino Acids
  • DNA, Complementary
  • Nitrogen Isotopes
  • Asparagine
  • Aspartate-Ammonia Ligase

Associated data

  • GENBANK/X89409
  • GENBANK/X89410