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    PHR2, a central regulator of phosphate signaling in rice, enhanced the expression of phosphate starvation-induced (PSI) genes and resulted in the enhancement of Pi acquisition under Pi deficiency stress. This occurred via PHR2 binding to a cis-element named the PHR1 binding sequences. However, the transcription level of PHR2 was not responsive to Pi starvation. So how is activity of transcription factor PHR2 adjusted to adapt diverse Pi status? Here, we identify an SPX family protein, Os-SPX4 (SPX4 hereafter), involving in Pi starvation signaling and acting as a negative regulator of PHR2. SPX4 is shown to be a fast turnover protein. When Pi is sufficient, through its interaction with PHR2, SPX4 inhibits the binding of PHR2 to its cis-element and reduces the targeting of PHR2 to the nucleus. However, when plants grow under Pi deficiency, the degradation of SPX4 is accelerated through the 26S proteasome pathway, thereby releasing PHR2 into the nucleus and activating the expression of PSI genes. Because the level of SPX4 is responsive to Pi concentration and SPX4 interacts with PHR2 and regulates its activity, this suggests that SPX4 senses the internal Pi concentration under diverse Pi conditions and regulates appropriate responses to maintain Pi homeostasis in plants. © 2014 American Society of Plant Biologists. All rights reserved.


    Qundan Lv, Yongjia Zhong, Yuguang Wang, Zhiye Wang, Li Zhang, Jing Shi, Zhongchang Wu, Yu Liu, Chuanzao Mao, Keke Yi, Ping Wu. SPX4 Negatively Regulates Phosphate Signaling and Homeostasis through Its Interaction with PHR2 in Rice. The Plant cell. 2014 Apr;26(4):1586-1597

    PMID: 24692424

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