Plant and Soil

, Volume 178, Issue 2, pp 171–177 | Cite as

The role of nicotianamine synthase in response to Fe nutrition status in Gramineae

  • Kyoko Higuchi
  • Kenji Kanazawa
  • Naoko-Kishi Nishizawa
  • Satoshi Mori
Research Article


Nicotianamine is an intermediate for the biosynthesis of mugineic acid-family phytosiderophores (MAs) in the Gramineae and a key substance for iron metabolism in dicots. Nicotianamine synthase catalyzes the formation of nicotianamine from S-adenosylmethionine. Nicotianamine synthase activity was induced in barley roots at the 3rd day after withholding Fe supply and declined within one day followmg the supply of Fe3+-epihydroxymugineic acid. The induction of nicotianamine synthase activity by Fe-deficiency was observed also in sorghum, maize, and rye, and the level of nicotianamine synthase activity was highly associated with the MAs secreted among graminaceous plant tested. Therefore, the nicotianamine synthase gene may be a suitable candidate for making a transgenic plant tolerant to Fe-deficiency.

Key words

Fe-deficiency graminaceous plant mugineic acids phytosiderophore nicotianamine synthase 



(p-amidinophenyl) methanesulfonylfluoride hydrochloride




2′-deoxymugineic acid


trans-epoxysuccinyl-leucylamido-(4-guanidino) butane


3-epihydroxymugineic acid


mugineic acid-family phytosiderophores which include deoxymugineic acid, mugineic acid, hydroxymugineic acid, epihydroxymugineic acid and avenic acid






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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kyoko Higuchi
    • 1
  • Kenji Kanazawa
    • 1
  • Naoko-Kishi Nishizawa
    • 1
  • Satoshi Mori
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Plant Molecular Physiology, Department of Applied Biological ChemistryThe University of TokyoTokyoJapan

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