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Plant Physiol. 2009 Feb;149(2):735-44. doi: 10.1104/pp.108.132373. Epub 2008 Dec 24.

Thylakoid membrane reduction affects the photosystem stoichiometry in the cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803.

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  • 1Institut für Biochemie und Molekularbiologie, ZBMZ , Albert-Ludwigs-Universität, 79104 Freiburg, Germany.


Biogenesis of thylakoid membranes in both chloroplasts and cyanobacteria is largely not understood today. The vesicle-inducing protein in plastids 1 (Vipp1) has been suggested to be essential for thylakoid membrane formation in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), as well as in the cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803, although its exact physiological function remains elusive so far. Here, we report that, upon depletion of Vipp1 in Synechocystis cells, the number of thylakoid layers in individual Synechocystis cells decreased, and that, in particular, the content of photosystem I (PSI) complexes was highly diminished in thylakoids. Furthermore, separation of native photosynthetic complexes indicated that PSI trimers are destabilized and the monomeric species is enriched. Therefore, depletion of thylakoid membranes specifically affects biogenesis and/or stabilization of PSI in cyanobacteria.

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