CS-20-2 - Live imaging of phosphate uptake and distribution in roots

Monday, July 16
3:38 PM - 3:58 PM

Plants require large amounts of phosphate (Pi) to support maximal growth and productivity, yet soils frequently contain scarce amounts of this essential nutrient. Although many of the transport proteins involved in the acquisition of Pi have been identified, the mechanisms responsible for coordinating the uptake, assimilation, and distribution of Pi throughout the plant are poorly understood. We used confocal microscopy and ratiometric imaging of a genetically encoded FRET-based Pi biosensor to monitor cytosolic Pi concentrations in roots of Arabidopsis thaliana and Medicago truncatula. Relative Pi concentrations varied between the developmental zones of the root regardless of external Pi supply. In vivo calibration of the biosensor indicated that the corresponding absolute concentrations vary by more than 3-fold between the root zones. Pharmacological treatments to uncouple Pi transport and assimilation revealed rapid changes in cytosolic Pi concentrations that we attribute to Pi uptake, and thus provide an approach to map spatial and temporal uptake activities throughout the root. The development of new biosensors designed to report Pi contents of organelles, as well as the construction of calibrated references and standardized imaging parameters, will facilitate studies of additional aspects of Pi homeostasis.


Abira Sahu – Texas A&M University Tript Sharma – Texas A&M University

Wayne Versaw

Texas A&M Universty


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CS-20-2 - Live imaging of phosphate uptake and distribution in roots

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