How do PII proteins integrate and regulate microbial metabolism, and how does this affect nitrogen fixation in Azospirillum brasilense?

Science / Life Sciences

Nitrogen is one of the limiting elements for plant growth and one of the most expensive agricultural inputs. Nitrogen-fixing bacteria, such as Azospirillum brasilense, are capable of transforming atmospheric nitrogen (N2) into ammonium, which can be used by plants (reducing the need for nitrogen fertilizers), in addition to protecting plants in stressful situations, such as drought. Studies on the metabolism of A. brasilense have indicated the participation of PII proteins in the regulation of the central metabolism of this organism. In this context, understanding the function of PII will allow us to understand the interrelationships between the different bacterial metabolic pathways, contributing to the understanding of the metabolism of A. brasilense and allowing the investigation of strains with more significant potential for use in agriculture.

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