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J Exp Bot. 2012 Feb;63(4):1559-74. doi: 10.1093/jxb/err429. Epub 2012 Feb 6.

Blue light signalling in chloroplast movements.

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Department of Plant Biotechnology, Faculty of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Biotechnology, Jagiellonian University, Gronostajowa 7, 30-387 Krakow, Poland.


Chloroplast movements are among the mechanisms allowing plants to cope with changes in their environment. Chloroplasts accumulate at illuminated cell areas under weak light while they avoid areas exposed to strong light. These directional responses may be controlled by blue and/or red light, depending on the plant group. In terrestrial angiosperms only the blue light perceived by phototropins is active. The last decade has seen a rapid development of studies on the mechanism of directional chloroplast movements, which started with an identification of the photoreceptors. A forward genetic approach has been used to identify the components which control chloroplast movements. This review summarizes the current state of research into the signalling pathways which lead to chloroplast responses. First, the molecular properties of phototropins are presented, followed by a characterization both of proteins which are active downstream of phototropins and of secondary messengers. Finally, cross-talk between light signalling involved in chloroplast movements and other signalling pathways is discussed.

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