Journal of plant physiology

Gibberellins negatively regulate light-induced nitrate reductase activity in Arabidopsis seedlings.

PMID 21856037


In the present study, the role of phytohormone gibberellins (GAs) on regulating the nitrate reductase (NR) activity was tested in Arabidopsis seedlings. The NR activity in light-grown Col-0 seedlings was reduced by exogenous GA₃ (an active form of GAs), but enhanced by exogenous paclobutrazol (PAC, a gibberellin biosynthesis inhibitor), suggesting that GAs negatively regulate the NR activity in light-grown seedlings. Light is known to influence the NR activity through both photosynthesis and phytochromes. When etiolated seedlings were transferred to white or red light, both exogenously applied GA₃ and PAC were found to function on the NR activity only in the presence of sucrose, implying that GAs are not involved in light signaling-induced but negatively regulate photoproducts-induced NR activity. NR is regulated by light mainly at two levels: transcript level and post-translational level. Our reverse transcription (RT)-PCR assays showed that GAs did not affect the transcript levels of NIA1 and NIA2, two genes that encode NR proteins. But the divalent cations (especially Mg²⁺) were required for GAs negative regulation of NR activity, in view of the importance of divalent cations during the process of post-translational regulation of NR activity, which indicates that GAs very likely regulate the NR activity at the post-translational level. In the following dark-light shift analyses, GAs were found to accelerate dark-induced decrease, but retard light-induced increase of the NR activity. Furthermore, it was observed that application of G₃ or PAC could impair diurnal variation of the NR activity. These results collectively indicate that GAs play a negative role during light regulation of NR activity in nature.