Plant systemic signaling pathways allow the integration and coordination of shoot and root organ metabolism and development at the whole-plant level depending on nutrient availability. In legumes, two systemic pathways have been reported in the Medicago truncatula model to regulate root nitrogen-fixing symbiotic nodulation. Both pathways involve leucine-rich repeat receptor-like kinases acting in shoots and proposed to perceive signaling peptides produced in roots depending on soil nutrient availability. In this study, we characterized in the M. truncatula Jemalong A17 genotype a mutant allelic series affecting the Compact Root Architecture2 (CRA2) receptor. These analyses revealed that this pathway acts systemically from shoots to positively regulate nodulation and is required for the activity of carboxyl-terminally encoded peptides (CEPs). In addition, we generated a double mutant to test genetic interactions of the CRA2 systemic pathway with the CLAVATA3/EMBRYO SURROUNDING REGION peptide (CLE)/Super Numeric Nodule (SUNN) receptor systemic pathway negatively regulating nodule number from shoots, which revealed an intermediate nodule number phenotype close to the wild type. Finally, we showed that the nitrate inhibition of nodule numbers was observed in cra2 mutants but not in sunn and cra2 sunn mutants. Overall, these results suggest that CEP/CRA2 and CLE/SUNN systemic pathways act independently from shoots to regulate nodule numbers.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Plant Science