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Plant Physiol. 1994 May;105(1):173-179.

Responses of Ribulose-1,5-Bisphosphate Carboxylase, Cytochrome f, and Sucrose Synthesis Enzymes in Rice Leaves to Leaf Nitrogen and Their Relationships to Photosynthesis.

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  • 1Department of Applied Biological Chemistry, Faculty of Agriculture, Tohoku University, Tsutsumidori-Amamiyamachi, Sendai 981, Japan.


The photosynthetic gas-exchange rates and various biochemical components of photosynthesis, including ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase (Rubisco) content, cytochrome (Cyt) f content, and the activities of two sucrose synthesis enzymes, were examined in young, fully expanded leaves of rice (Oryza sativa L.) grown hydroponically in different nitrogen concentrations. The light-saturated rate of photosynthesis at an intercellular CO2 pressure of 20 Pa (CO2-limited photosynthesis) was linearly dependent on leaf nitrogen content, but curvilinearly correlated with Rubisco content. This difference was due to a greater than proportional increase in Rubisco content relative to leaf nitrogen content and the presence of a CO2 transfer resistance between the intercellular air spaces and the carboxylation sites. CO2-limited photosynthesis was proportional to Cyt f content, one of the key components of electron transport, but was not proportional to the activities of cytosolic fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase and sucrose phosphate synthase, the two regulatory enzymes of sucrose synthesis. Light-saturated photosynthesis above an intercellular CO2 pressure of 60 Pa (CO2-saturated photosynthesis) was curvilinearly dependent on leaf nitrogen content. This CO2-saturated photosynthesis was proportional to Cyt f content in the low- and normal-nitrogen leaves, and correlated better with the activities of cytosolic fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase and sucrose phosphate synthase in the high-nitrogen leaves. The increase in the activities of these two enzymes with increasing leaf nitrogen was not as great as the increase in Cyt f content. Thus, as leaf nitrogen increased, the limitation caused by the activities of sucrose synthesis enzymes came into play, which resulted in the curvilinear relationship. However, this limitation by sucrose synthesis enzymes did not affect photosynthesis under normal ambient air.

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