Transporters and Pumps in Plant Signaling

Volume 7 of the series Signaling and Communication in Plants pp 99-131

Iron Transport and Signaling in Plants

  • S. ThomineAffiliated withInstitut des Sciences du Végétal CNRS Email author 
  • , V. LanquarAffiliated withDepartment of Plant Biology, Carnegie Institution

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Iron is an essential micronutrient for most living organisms. Paradoxically, although iron is abundant in many soils, iron availability is very often limiting for plant growth. In addition, iron is potentially highly toxic to cells. Therefore, iron homeostasis needs to be tightly regulated. This chapter focuses on the iron transport pathways dedicated to iron uptake, distribution and sequestration in plants, and the processes that regulate their activities. Nongraminaceous and graminaceous plant species acquire iron from the soil through two distinct strategies based on iron reduction and iron chelation, respectively. We describe the molecular mechanisms underlying these strategies and the factors responsible for their up-regulation under iron deficiency. The acquisition of iron by plants is regulated at several levels by local and systemic signals. The systemic signaling pathway appears to integrate multiple inputs from hormonal signals, diurnal regulation, and the plant nutritional demand.