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Pedosphere
Year: 2007  |  Volume: 17  |  Issue: 6  |  Page No.: 697 - 705

Mechanisms of Enhanced Rice Growth and Nitrogen Uptake by Nitrate

Ying-Hua DUAN, Xiao-Ming YIN, Ya-Li ZHANG and Qi-Rong SHEN    

Abstract: Rice is being increasingly cultivated in intermittently irrigated regions and also in aerobic soil in which Nitrate (NO3) plays important role in nutrition of plant. However, there is no information regarding the influence of nitrate on the overall growth and uptake of nitrogen (N) in rice plant. Solution culture experiments were carried out to study the effects of NO3 on the plant growth, uptake of N, and uptake kinetics of NH+4 in four typical rice (Oryza sativa L.) cultivars (conventional indica, conventional japonica, hybrid indica, and hybrid japonica), and on plasma membrane potential in roots of two conventional rice cultivars (indica and japonica) at the seedling stage. The results obtained indicated that a ratio of 50/50 NH+4 -N/NO3-N increased the average biomass of rice shoots and roots by 20% when compared with that of 100/0 NH+4 -N/NO3-N. In case of the 50/50 ratio, as compared with the 100/0 ratio, total N accumulated in shoots and roots of rice increased on an average by 42% and 57%, respectively. Conventional indica responds to NO3more than any other cultivars that were tested. The NO3supply increased the maximum uptake rate (Vmax) of NH+4 by rice but did not show any effect on the apparent Michaelis-Menten constant (Km) value, with the average value of Vmax for NH+4 among the four cultivars being increased by 31.5% in comparison with those in the absence of NO3. This suggested that NO3 significantly increased the numbers of the ammonium transporters. However, the lack of effect on the Km value also suggested that the presence of NO3had no effect on the affnity of the transporters for NH+4. The plasma membrane potential in the roots of conventional indica and japonica were greatly increased by the addition of NO3, suggesting that NO3could improve the uptake of N by roots of the rice plant. In conclusion, the mechanisms by which NO3enhances the growth and N uptake of rice plant was found by the increased value of Vmax of NH+4 and increased plasma membrane potential. Thus promotion of nitrification in paddy soil is of great significance for improving the production of rice.

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