Leguminous plants form root nodules with rhizobia that fix atmospheric dinitrogen (N2) for the nitrogen (N) nutrient. Combined nitrogen sources, particular nitrate, severely repress nodule growth and nitrogen fixation activity in soybeans (Glycine max [L.] Merr.). A microarray-based transcriptome analysis and the metabolome analysis were carried out for the roots and nodules of hydroponically grown soybean plants treated with 5 mM of nitrate for 24 h and compared with control without nitrate. Gene expression ratios of nitrate vs. the control were highly enhanced for those probesets related to nitrate transport and assimilation and carbon metabolism in the roots, but much less so in the nodules, except for the nitrate transport and asparagine synthetase. From the metabolome analysis, the concentration ratios of metabolites for the nitrate treatment vs. the control indicated that most of the amino acids, phosphorous-compounds and organic acids in roots were increased about twofold in the roots, whereas in the nodules most of the concentrations of the amino acids, P-compounds and organic acids were decreased while asparagine increased exceptionally. These results may support the hypothesis that nitrate primarily promotes nitrogen and carbon metabolism in the roots, but mainly represses this metabolism in the nodules.
Ishikawa, S., Ono, Y., Ohtake, N., Sueyoshi, K., Tanabata, S., & Ohyama, T. (2018). Transcriptome and metabolome analyses reveal that nitrate strongly promotes nitrogen and carbon metabolism in soybean roots, but tends to repress it in nodules. Plants, 7(2). https://doi.org/10.3390/plants7020032