The spatial arrangement of the plant root system (root system architecture, RSA) is very sensitive to edaphic and endogenous signals that report on the nutrient status of soil and plant. Signalling pathways underpinning RSA responses to individual nutrients, particularly nitrate and phosphate, have been unravelled. Researchers have now started to investigate interactive effects between two or more nutrients on RSA. Several proteins enabling crosstalk between signalling pathways have recently been identified. RSA is potentially an important trait for sustainable and/or marginal agriculture. It is generally assumed that RSA responses are adaptive and optimise nutrient uptake in a given environment, but hard evidence for this paradigm is still sparse. Here we summarize recent advances made in these areas of research.
Shahzad, Z., & Amtmann, A. (2017, October 1). Food for thought: how nutrients regulate root system architecture. Current Opinion in Plant Biology. Elsevier Ltd. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pbi.2017.06.008