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Research status of transcription factors involved in controlling gene expression by nitrate signaling in higher plants
J Plant Biotechnol 2021;48:124-130
Published online September 30, 2021
© 2021 The Korean Society for Plant Biotechnology.

Yu Jin Jung・Joung Soon Park ・Ji Yun Go ・Hyo Ju Lee ・Jin Young Kim・Ye Ji Lee ・Ki Hong Nam ・ Yong-Gu Cho ・Kwon Kyoo Kang

(Division of Horticultural Biotechnology, Hankyong National University, Anseong 17579, Korea)
(Institute of Genetic Engineering, Hankyong National University, Anseong 17579, Korea)
(Department of Crop Science, Chungbuk National University, Cheongju 28644, Korea)
Correspondence to: e-mail:
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Received August 10, 2021; Revised September 1, 2021; Accepted September 1, 2021.
cc This is an Open-Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Nitrate is an important nutrient and signaling molecule in plants that modulates the expression of many genes and regulates plant growth. In this study, we cover the research status of transcription factors related to the control of gene expression by nitrate signaling in higher plants. Nitrate reductase is a key enzyme in nitrogen assimilation, as it catalyzes the nitrate-to-nitrite reduction process in plants. A variety of factors, including nitrate, light, metabolites, phytohormones, low temperature, and drought, modulate the expression levels of nitrate reductase genes and nitrate reductase activity, which is consistent with the physiological role if. Recently, several transcription factors controlling the expression of nitrate reductase genes have been identified in higher plants. NODULE-INCEPTION-Like Proteins (NLPs) are transcription factors responsible for the nitrate-inducible expression of nitrate reductase genes. Since NLPs also control the nitrate-inducible expression of genes encoding the nitrate transporter, nitrite transporter, and nitrite reductase, the expression levels of nitrate reduction pathway-associated genes are coordinately modulated by NLPs in response to nitrate. Understanding the function of nitrate in plants will be useful to create crops with low nitrogen use.
Keywords : Nitrate, Nitrate signal, NLP transcription factor, Gene expression

September 2021, 48 (3)
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