Nodule-specific regulation of phosphatidylinositol transfer protein expression in Lotus japonicus. Academic Article uri icon


  • Phosphatidylinositol transfer proteins (PITPs) modulate signal transduction pathways and membrane-trafficking functions in eukaryotes. Here, we describe the characterization of a gene family from Lotus japonicus that encodes a novel class of plant PITP-like proteins (LjPLPs) and that is regulated in an unusual nodule-specific manner. Members of this gene family were identified based on their nucleotide sequence homology with a previously described cDNA, LjNOD16, which encodes the L. japonicus late nodulin Nlj16. Nlj16 or highly related amino acid sequences are shown to constitute C-terminal domains of LjPLPs and are suggested to function as specific plasma membrane targeting modules. The expression patterns of one member of this gene family (LjPLP-IV) revealed that LjNOD16 mRNA synthesis in nodules is the result of the transcriptional activity of a nodule-specific promoter located in an intron of the LjPLP-IV gene. This intron-borne bidirectional promoter also generates nodule-specific antisense transcripts derived from the N-terminal PITP domain coding region of the LjPLP-IV gene. We propose that Nlj16 protein synthesis and LjPLP-IV antisense transcript generation are components of an elaborate mechanism designed to control LjPLP synthesis and/or functioning in nodules.

published proceedings

  • Plant Cell

author list (cited authors)

  • Kapranov, P., Routt, S. M., Bankaitis, V. A., de Bruijn, F. J., & Szczyglowski, K.

citation count

  • 36

complete list of authors

  • Kapranov, P||Routt, SM||Bankaitis, VA||de Bruijn, FJ||Szczyglowski, K

publication date

  • June 2001