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J Proteomics. 2009 Apr 13;72(3):397-415.

Hydroponics on a chip: analysis of the Fe deficient Arabidopsis thylakoid membrane proteome.

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  • 1Department of Biological Sciences, California State University, Chico, CA 95929-0555, United States.


The model plant Arabidopsis thaliana was used to evaluate the thylakoid membrane proteome under Fe-deficient conditions. Plants were cultivated using a novel hydroponic system, called "hydroponics on a chip", which yields highly reproducible plant tissue samples for physiological analyses, and can be easily used for in vivo stable isotope labeling. The thylakoid membrane proteome, from intact chloroplasts isolated from Fe-sufficient and Fe-deficient plants grown with hydroponics on a chip, was analyzed using liquid chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry. Intact masses of thylakoid membrane proteins were measured, many for the first time, and several proteins were identified with post-translational modifications that were altered by Fe deficiency; for example, the doubly phosphorylated form of the photosystem II oxygen evolving complex, PSBH, increased under Fe-deficiency. Increased levels of photosystem II protein subunit PSBS were detected in the Fe-deficient samples. Antioxidant enzymes, including ascorbate peroxidase and peroxiredoxin Q, were only detected in the Fe-deficient samples. We present the first biochemical evidence that the two major LHC IIb proteins (LHCB1 and LHCB2) may have significantly different functions in the thylakoid membrane. The study illustrates the utility of intact mass proteomics as an indispensable tool for functional genomics. "Hydroponics on a chip" provides the ability to grow A. thaliana under defined conditions that will be useful for systems biology.

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