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Mol Microbiol. 2002 May;44(4):981-8.

The cyanobacterial phytochrome Cph2 inhibits phototaxis towards blue light.

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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Institut für Biologie, Chausseestr. 117, 10115 Berlin, Germany.


We analysed the effects of inactivation of the phytochrome genes cph1 and cph2 on the phototactic migration of the cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 under different light qualities. Motility towards white, green, red and far red light was not altered in several independently raised cph1, cph2 and cph1/cph2 double mutants. Blue light (lambda = 400-500 nm) did not induce motility in wild-type and cph1 mutant cells, whereas cph2 and cph1/cph2 double mutants moved towards the blue light. Inhibition of the photosynthetic electron transport by DCMU influenced the motility of cph2 mutants under blue light, but not under white, red and far red light. RNA blot hybridizations did not indicate an altered transcript accumulation of the pilin-encoding pilA1 gene under blue light. We propose that the Cph2 protein is part of a light-stimulated signal transduction chain inhibiting the movement of Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 cells towards blue light.

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