Effect of ferritin on nitrogen fixation in Lotus japonicus nodules under various iron concentrations

Yamikani Frank Chikoti, Supriadi, Mallika Duangkhet, Sirinapa Chungopast, Shigeyuki Tajima, Jian Feng Ma, Mika Nomura

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1 Citation (Scopus)


In the nitrogen fixation process, iron plays a vital role by being part of many symbiotic proteins, such as nitrogenase and leghemoglobin, in an active symbiosis. Excess or insufficient iron in active nitrogen fixation negatively affects the entire process. In Lotus japonicus nodules, ferritin is expressed at the initial stages of nodule development and increases at the nodule senescence stage to mobilize iron release during that stage. In this study, we investigated the effects of overexpressing and suppressing ferritin on nitrogen fixation. Acetylene reduction activity revealed that nitrogen fixation is affected by the overexpression of ferritin at high iron concentrations, but at low iron concentrations, higher nitrogen fixation was observed in ferritin-suppressed plants. qRT-PCR data indicated that suppression of ferritin in nodules induces antioxidant genes, such as superoxide dismutase, dehydroascorbate reductase and ascorbate peroxidase, to detoxify reactive oxygen species. Our data suggest that suppressing ferritin in the nodules is effective for higher nitrogen fixation under iron deficient conditions. Overaccumulated ferritin in nodule is effective under the higher iron conditions, such as senescence state.

Original languageEnglish
Article number153247
JournalJournal of Plant Physiology
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2020


  • Ferritin
  • Lotus japonicus
  • Mesorhizobium loti
  • Nitrogen fixation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Plant Science


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