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Measurement of net fluxes of ammonium and nitrate at the surface of barley roots using ion-selective microelectrodes


, : Measurement of net fluxes of ammonium and nitrate at the surface of barley roots using ion-selective microelectrodes. Plant Physiology 93(1): 271-280

Neutral carrier-based liquid membrane ion-selective microelectrodes for NH(4) (+) and NO(3) (-) were developed and used to investigate inorganic nitrogen acquisition in two varieties of barley, Hordeum vulgare L. cv Olli and H. vulgare L. cv Prato, originating in cold and warm climates, respectively. In the present paper, the methods used in the fabrication of ammonium- and nitrate-selective microelectrodes are described, and their application in the study of inorganic nitrogen uptake is demonstrated. Net ionic fluxes of NH(4) (+) and NO(3) (-) were measured in the unstirred layer of solution immediately external to the root surface. The preference for the uptake of a particular ionic form was examined by measuring the net flux of the predominant form of inorganic nitrogen, with and without the alternative ion in solution. Net flux of NH(4) (+) into the cold-adapted variety remained unchanged when equimolar concentrations (200 micromolar) of NH(4) (+) and NO(3) (-) were present. Similarly, net flux of NO(3) (-) into the warm-adapted variety was not affected when NH(4) (+) was also present in solution. The high temporal and spatial resolution afforded by ammonium- and nitrate-selective microelectrodes permits a detailed examination of inorganic nitrogen acquisition and its component ionic interactions.

US$19.90

PMID: 16667447

DOI: 10.1104/pp.93.1.271


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