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Trends Plant Sci. 2001 Jan;6(1):31-6.

A plastid terminal oxidase comes to light: implications for carotenoid biosynthesis and chlororespiration.

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  • 1Laboratoire de Génétique Moléculaire des Plantes, UMR5575, CNRS, Université Joseph Fourier, BP53X, Grenoble 9, Cedex, France.


Inactivation of a plastid located quinone-oxygen oxidoreductase gene in the immutans Arabidopsis mutant leads to a photobleached phenotype because of a lack of photoprotective carotenoids. Inactivation of the corresponding gene in the ghost tomato mutant leads to a similar phenotype in leaves and to carotenoid deficiency in petals and ripe fruits. This plastid terminal oxidase (the first to be cloned and biochemically characterized) resembles the mitochondrial cyanide-insensitive alternative oxidase. Here, we propose a model integrating this novel oxidase as a component of an electron transport chain associated to carotenoid desaturation, as well as to a respiratory activity within plastids.

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