Journal Article

The effects of Rubisco activase on C<sub>4</sub> photosynthesis and metabolism at high temperature

L. Hendrickson, R. Sharwood, M. Ludwig, S. M. Whitney, M. R. Badger and S. von Caemmerer

in Journal of Experimental Botany

Published on behalf of Society for Experimental Biology

Volume 59, issue 7, pages 1789-1798
Published in print May 2008 | ISSN: 0022-0957
Published online March 2008 | e-ISSN: 1460-2431 | DOI:
The effects of Rubisco activase on C4 photosynthesis and metabolism at high temperature

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The activation of Rubisco in vivo requires the presence of the regulatory protein Rubisco activase. This enzyme facilitates the release of sugar phosphate inhibitors from Rubisco catalytic sites thereby influencing carbamylation. T1 progeny of transgenic Flaveria bidentis (a C4 dicot) containing genetically reduced levels of Rubisco activase were used to explore the role of the enzyme in C4 photosynthesis at high temperature. A range of T1 progeny was screened at 25 °C and 40 °C for Rubisco activase content, photosynthetic rate, Rubisco carbamylation, and photosynthetic metabolite pools. The small isoform of F. bidentis activase was expressed and purified from E. coli and used to quantify leaf activase content. In wild-type F. bidentis, the activase monomer content was 10.6±0.8 μmol m−2 (447±36 mg m−2) compared to a Rubisco site content of 14.2±0.8 μmol m−2. CO2 assimilation rates and Rubisco carbamylation declined at both 25 °C and 40 °C when the Rubisco activase content dropped below 3 μmol m−2 (125 mg m−2), with the status of Rubisco carbamylation at an activase content greater than this threshold value being 44±5% at 40 °C compared to 81±2% at 25 °C. When the CO2 assimilation rate was reduced, ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate and aspartate pools increased whereas 3-phosphoglycerate and phosphoenol pyruvate levels decreased, demonstrating an interconnectivity of the C3 and C4 metabolites pools. It is concluded that during short-term treatment at 40 °C, Rubisco activase content is not the only factor modulating Rubisco carbamylation during C4 photosynthesis.

Keywords: C4 photosynthesis; Flaveria bidentis; high temperature; Rubisco; Rubsico activase

Journal Article.  5716 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Plant Sciences and Forestry

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