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Photosynth Res. 2011 Sep;109(1-3):161-8. doi: 10.1007/s11120-010-9618-9. Epub 2011 Jan 21.

Acclimation to low or limiting CO2 in non-synchronous Chlamydomonas causes a transient synchronization of the cell division cycle.

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Biology Program, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA.


Acclimation of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii (hereafter, Chlamydomonas) to low or limiting CO(2) or inorganic carbon (C(i)) has been studied fairly extensively with regard to the mechanisms underlying the inducible C(i) acquisition systems and the signal transduction pathway involved in recognizing and responding to decreased C(i) availability. Investigation of low C(i )acclimation responses typically is performed with non-synchronous cultures grown in continuous light to avoid any effects of the cell division cycle (CDC) confounding interpretation of acclimation responses. However, little is known about whether acclimation to low C(i) might affect the distribution of cells among the various stages of the CDC. To investigate the effects of a limiting-C(i) challenge on the CDC of Chlamydomonas, flow cytometry was used to monitor the distribution of cells among the CDC stages in both synchronous and non-synchronous cultures during acclimation to low or limiting C(i). When faced with C(i) limitation, non-synchronous cultures of Chlamydomonas undergo transient synchronization as those cells past the Commitment point of the CDC undergo division, while the remainder of the cells pause their growth in early G-phase, with the result that the cells all accumulate in early G-phase, appearing transiently synchronized until acclimated sufficiently to the decreased C(i) for growth to resume. This perturbation of the CDC by a limiting-C(i) challenge has important implications for the interpretation of gene expression and other responses apparently induced by low or limiting C(i).

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