Plant and Soil

, Volume 330, Issue 1–2, pp 163–172 | Cite as

Interactions between elevated CO2 and N2-fixation determine soybean yield—a test using a non-nodulated mutant

  • Shimpei Oikawa
  • Kay-May Miyagi
  • Kouki Hikosaka
  • Masumi Okada
  • Toshinori Matsunami
  • Makie Kokubun
  • Toshihiko Kinugasa
  • Tadaki Hirose
Regular Article


Elevated CO2 increases seed production more in plant species that form a symbiotic association with N2–fixing bacteria than in species without such association. We studied the mechanism of the increase of seed production with elevated CO2 using nodulated soybean (Glycine max cv. Enrei) and its non-nodulated isogenic line (cv. En1282). Increase in seed production with elevated CO2 was observed in nodulated Enrei but was not in non-nodulated En1282. The increase in seed production in Enrei was explained by the increase in the rate of dry mass production during the reproductive period. This increase was associated with the increase in N assimilation in the reproductive period and the seed N concentration that remained the same as that at ambient CO2. Dry mass production and nitrogen assimilation did not increase in the vegetative phase in both lines. These results accorded with the amount of nodules in Enrei that increased at elevated CO2 especially after flowering. We conclude that the increase in N assimilation in the reproductive period would be the key for increasing soybean yield in the future high-CO2 world.


Glycine max Elevated carbon dioxide concentration Non-nodulated isogenic line Symbiosis Seed production Nitrogen 



We thank Kazumasa Ishikawa, Chiho Kamiyama and Yosuke Matsumoto of Tohoku University, and Meguru Inoue, Teruo Saito, Yukichi Satoh and other members of NARCT for technical assistance. We are also grateful to Shoichiro Akao for allowing us to use En1282. David Lawlor provided valuable comments on an earlier version of this paper. This work was supported in part by Grant-in-aid from the Japan Ministry of Education, Science and Culture.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shimpei Oikawa
    • 1
    • 2
  • Kay-May Miyagi
    • 3
  • Kouki Hikosaka
    • 3
  • Masumi Okada
    • 4
  • Toshinori Matsunami
    • 5
  • Makie Kokubun
    • 6
  • Toshihiko Kinugasa
    • 7
  • Tadaki Hirose
    • 8
  1. 1.Center for Bioresource Field ScienceKyoto Institute of TechnologyKyotoJapan
  2. 2.Department of Plant BiologyUniversity of IllinoisUrbanaUSA
  3. 3.Graduate School of Life SciencesTohoku UniversityMiyagiJapan
  4. 4.Faculty of AgricultureIwate UniversityIwateJapan
  5. 5.Akita Prefectural AgricultureForestry and Fisheries Research CenterAkitaJapan
  6. 6.Graduate School of Agricultural ScienceTohoku UniversityMiyagiJapan
  7. 7.Faculty of AgricultureTottori UniversityTottoriJapan
  8. 8.Department of International Agricultural DevelopmentTokyo University of AgricultureTokyoJapan

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