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Plant Cell Physiol. 2004 Oct;45(10):1426-33.

Enhancement of cyclic electron flow around PSI at high light and its contribution to the induction of non-photochemical quenching of chl fluorescence in intact leaves of tobacco plants.

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Research Institute of Innovative Technology for the Earth (RITE), 9-2 Kizugawadai, Kizu-cho, Soraku-gun, Kyoto, 619-0292 Japan.


Non-photochemical quenching (NPQ) of Chl fluorescence is a mechanism for dissipating excess photon energy and is dependent on the formation of a DeltapH across the thylakoid membranes. The role of cyclic electron flow around photosystem I (PSI) (CEF-PSI) in the formation of this DeltapH was elucidated by studying the relationships between O2-evolution rate [V(O2)], quantum yield of both PSII and PSI [Phi(PSII) and Phi(PSI)], and Chl fluorescence parameters measured simultaneously in intact leaves of tobacco plants in CO2-saturated air. Although increases in light intensity raised V(O2) and the relative electron fluxes through both PSII and PSI [Phi(PSII) x PFD and Phi(PSI) x PFD] only Phi(PSI) x PFD continued to increase after V(O2) and Phi(PSII) x PFD became light saturated. These results revealed the activity of an electron transport reaction in PSI not related to photosynthetic linear electron flow (LEF), namely CEF-PSI. NPQ of Chl fluorescence drastically increased after Phi(PSII) x PFD became light saturated and the values of NPQ correlated positively with the relative activity of CEF-PSI. At low temperatures, the light-saturation point of Phi(PSII) x PFD was lower than that of Phi(PSI) x PFD and NPQ was high. On the other hand, at high temperatures, the light-dependence curves of Phi(PSII) x PFD and Phi(PSI) x PFD corresponded completely and NPQ was not induced. These results indicate that limitation of LEF induced CEF-PSI, which, in turn, helped to dissipate excess photon energy by driving NPQ of Chl fluorescence.

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