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Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 2017 Sep 26;372(1730). pii: 20160390. doi: 10.1098/rstb.2016.0390.

Interaction between photosynthetic electron transport and chloroplast sinks triggers protection and signalling important for plant productivity.

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Molecular Plant Biology, Department of Biochemistry, University of Turku, 20014 Turku, Finland.
Molecular Plant Biology, Department of Biochemistry, University of Turku, 20014 Turku, Finland


The photosynthetic light reactions provide energy that is consumed and stored in electron sinks, the products of photosynthesis. A balance between light reactions and electron consumption in the chloroplast is vital for plants, and is protected by several photosynthetic regulation mechanisms. Photosystem I (PSI) is particularly susceptible to photoinhibition when these factors become unbalanced, which can occur in low temperatures or in high light. In this study we used the pgr5 Arabidopsis mutant that lacks ΔpH-dependent regulation of photosynthetic electron transport as a model to study the consequences of PSI photoinhibition under high light. We found that PSI damage severely inhibits carbon fixation and starch accumulation, and attenuates enzymatic oxylipin synthesis and chloroplast regulation of nuclear gene expression after high light stress. This work shows that modifications to regulation of photosynthetic light reactions, which may be designed to improve yield in crop plants, can negatively impact metabolism and signalling, and thereby threaten plant growth and stress tolerance.This article is part of the themed issue 'Enhancing photosynthesis in crop plants: targets for improvement'.


CO2 fixation; PSI photoinhibition; chloroplast signalling; oxylipins; photosynthesis regulation

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