Differential changes in galactolipid and phospholipid species in soybean leaves and roots under nitrogen deficiency and after nodulation


The availability of nitrogen (N) to plants has a profound impact on carbohydrate and protein metabolism, but little is known about its effect on membrane lipid species. This study examines the changes in galactolipid and phospholipid species in soybean as affected by the availability of N, either supplied to soil or obtained through Bradyrhizobium japonicum nodulation. When N was limited in soil, the content of galactolipids, monogalactosyldiacylglycerol (MGDG) and digalactosyldiacyglycerol (DGDG), decreased drastically in leaves, while a smaller decrease of DGDG was observed in roots. In both leaves and roots, the overall content of different phospholipid classes was largely unchanged by N limitation, although some individual phospholipid molecular species did display significant changes. Nodulation with Bradyrhizobium of soybean grown in N-deficient soil resulted in a large increase in levels of plastidic lipid classes, MGDG, DGDG, and phosphatidylglycerol, along with smaller increases in non-plastidic phospholipids in leaves. Nodulation also led to higher levels of phospholipids in roots without changes in root levels of MGDG and DGDG. Overall, N availability alters lipid content more in leaves than roots and more in galactolipids than phospholipids. Increased N availability leads to increased galactolipid accumulation in leaves, regardless of whether N is supplied from the soil or symbiotic fixation.



Soybean, Leguminosae, Bradyrhizobium japonicum, Nitrogen starvation, Nodulation,, Lipid profiling, Legume