Isolation and partial characterisation of PHT1;5, a putative high affinity phosphate transporter from Arabidopsis thaliana

Loedolff, Bianke (2012-03)

Thesis (MSc)--Stellenbosch University, 2012.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Inorganic Phosphate (Pi) is one of the key nutrients required by all living organisms on earth. This nutrient is of vital importance to higher plants but it is not readily available for uptake from the soil, implying constant stress on plants. During photosynthetic dark and light reactions, phosphate is a prerequisite for all reactions to occur and to ensure plant survival. This statement implies that a careful homeostatic control of this nutrient is necessary in order to maintain a balanced carbon flow in all sub-cellular plant compartments. Phosphate limitation is a threat to plant survival and one way of addressing this nutritional hurdle is by feeding plants with fertilizer. This method of crop development and general plant maintenance by humans has a devastating effect on the environment, as phosphate causes eutrophication and various other consequences which are detrimental to animal life. Plants, however, are naturally equipped with Pi transporters which are activated conditionally depending on the external Pi availability. These transporters are present in most sub-cellular compartments and some of them have been identified and characterised, while others remain to be a prediction. If these transporters are characterised accordingly it might eventually mean that the use of fertilizers may no longer be necessary. In order to contribute to successful Pi-efficient crop development, a clearer understanding of P-dynamics in the soil and its recycling ability inside the plant itself is necessary. During this study it was attempted to characterise a putative high affinity Pi transporter, PHT1;5, from Arabidopsis thaliana via a Escherichia coli and yeast heterologous expression system and its Km value predicted in order to verify/hypothesise whether it is a high or low affinity transporter. This transporter is expressed in leaves and could be a promising tool for future carbon partitioning studies during phosphate limitation.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Anorganiese fosfaat (Pi) word beskou as een van die belangrikste nutriente benodig vir alle lewe op aarde. Dit vervul ‘n hoof rol in talle noodsaaklike prosesse in hoër plante en is veral ‘n voorvereiste vir fotosintetiese reaksies om plaas te vind. In ‘n plant se natuurlike omgewing is anorganiese fosfaat nie geredelik bekskikbaar in grond nie en dus word daar vermoed dat plante onder konstante fosfaat stres gevind word. Omdat fosfaat so ‘n belangrike rol speel tydens fotosintese is dit noodsaaklik dat daar ‘n balans op sellulêre vlak gehandhaaf word, veral wat die verspreiding van koolhidrate tussen die verskillende kompartemente van die sel betref. Plante se oorlewing word bedreig deur ‘n tekort aan fosfaat in die omgewing en die enigste onmiddelike oplossing daarvoor is deur die toediening van bemestingstowwe. Hierdie metode van landery ontwikkeling en algemene instandhouding van plante deur die mensdom het ’n baie negatiewe effek op die omgewing. ‘n Oormaat fosfaat lei tot eutrifikasie en het verkeie ander negatiewe nagevolge wat dodelik is vir die dierelewe. Plante beskik ook oor natuurlike interne fosfaat transporters om hierdie tekort te oorkom. Hierdie transporters word op grond van eksterne fosfaat beskikbaarheid ge-aktiveer of ge-deaktifeer. Die transporters is teenwoordig in meeste sub-sellulêre kompartemente en sommige is al ge-identifiseer en gekarakteriseer, terwyl ander slegs ‘n voorspelling bly. Gedurende hierdie studie was ‘n poging aangewend om ‘n anorganiese fosfaat transporter van Arabidopsis thaliana, PHT1;5, te karakteriseer met behulp van mikro-organismes soos Escherichia coli en gis. Die poging het ingesluit om ‘n Km waarde vir hierdie transporter te voorspel en sodoende ‘n hipotese daar te stel van of dit hoë of lae affiniteit het vir fosfaat. Die transporter word groot en deels aangetref in blare en kan dus dien as ‘n belowende apparaat vir toekomstige koolhidraat uitruiling studies gedurende fosfaat tekort.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/20243
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