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Elevated atmospheric CO2 concentration triggers redistribution of nitrogen to promote tillering in rice
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  • Juan Zhou,
  • Yingbo Gao,
  • Junpeng Wang,
  • Chang Liu,
  • Zi Wang,
  • Minjia Lv,
  • Xiaoxiang Zhang,
  • Yong Zhou,
  • Guichun Dong,
  • Yulong Wang,
  • Jianye Huang,
  • Dafeng Hui,
  • Zefeng Yang,
  • Youli Yao
Juan Zhou
Yangzhou University
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Yingbo Gao
Yangzhou University
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Junpeng Wang
Yangzhou University
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Chang Liu
Yangzhou University
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Zi Wang
Yangzhou University
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Minjia Lv
Yangzhou University
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Xiaoxiang Zhang
Yangzhou University
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Yong Zhou
Yangzhou University
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Guichun Dong
Yangzhou University
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Yulong Wang
Yangzhou University
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Jianye Huang
Yangzhou University
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Dafeng Hui
Tennessee State University
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Zefeng Yang
Yangzhou University
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Youli Yao
Yangzhou University
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Abstract

Elevated atmospheric CO2 concentration (eCO2) reduces nitrogen (N) content in rice plants and stimulates tillering. However, these are contradictory to the general consensus that reduced N would constrain rice tillering. To resolve this, we detected N distribution in organs and transcriptomic changes of different organs after subjected to eCO2 in combination with different N application rates. Our results indicated that eCO2 promoted rice tillers more under higher N supply conditions, and confirmed that N availability constrained tillering in the early growth stage. Despite N content declined in the leaf and sheath of rice exposed to eCO2, the new-born tillers had a stable or higher N content compared to those under ambient CO2. Apparently the redistribution of N within the plant per se was a critical adaptation strategy to eCO2 condition. Transcriptomic analysis revealed that eCO2 introduced less extensive alteration of gene expression than N application. Most importantly, the expression levels of multiple N-related transporters and receptors were differentially regulated, suggesting that multiple genes were involved in sensing the N signal and transporting N metabolites in adapting to eCO2. The redistribution of N in different organs could be a universal adaptation strategy of terrestrial plants to eCO2.