Challenges to develop nitrogen-fixing cereals by direct nif-gene transfer

Authors
Curatti, Leonardo; Rubio, Luis M.
Publication Year
2014
Language
English
Format
article
Status
Published version
Description
Some regions of the developing world suffer low cereal production yields due to low fertilizer inputs, among other factors. Biological N2 fixation, catalyzed by the prokaryotic enzyme nitrogenase, is an alternative to the use of synthetic N fertilizers. The molybdenum nitrogenase is an O2-labile metalloenzyme composed of the NifDK and NifH proteins, which biosyntheses require a number of nif gene products. A challenging strategy to increase cereal crop productivity in a scenario of low N fertilization is the direct transfer of nif genes into cereals. The sensitivity of nitrogenase to O2 and the apparent complexity of nitrogenase biosynthesis are the main barriers identified so far. Expression of active NifH requires the products of nifM, nifH, and possibly nifU and nifS, whereas active NifDK requires the products of nifH, nifD, nifK, nifB, nifE, nifN, and possibly nifU, nifS, nifQ, nifV, nafY, nifW and nifZ. Plastids and mitochondria are potential subcellular locations for nitrogenase. Both could provide the ATP and electrons required for nitrogenase to function but they differ in their internal O2 levels and their ability to incorporate ammonium into amino acids.
Fil: Curatti, Leonardo. Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas. Centro Científico Tecnológico Mar del Plata. Instituto de Investigaciones En Biodiversidad y Biotecnología; Argentina. Fundación para Investigaciones Biológicas Aplicadas; España
Fil: Rubio, Luis M.. Universidad Politecnica de Madrid; España
Subject
CEREALES
NITROGEN FIXATION
GENETIC ENGINEERING
FERTILIZERS
FOOD SECURITY
NITROGENASE
NIF
Bioquímica y Biología Molecular
Ciencias Biológicas
CIENCIAS NATURALES Y EXACTAS
Access level
Restricted access
License
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.5/ar/
Repository
CONICET Digital (CONICET)
Institution
Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas
OAI Identifier
oai:ri.conicet.gov.ar:11336/10744