Manganese Limitation Induces Changes in the Activity and in the Organization of Photosynthetic Complexes in the Cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. Strain PCC 6803

Eitan Salomon, Nir Keren*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations

Abstract

Manganese (Mn) ions are essential for oxygen evolution activity in photoautotrophs. In this paper, we demonstrate the dynamic response of the photosynthetic apparatus to changes in Mn bioavailability in cyanobacteria. Cultures of the cyanobacterium Synechocystis PCC 6803 could grow on Mn concentrations as low as 100 nM without any observable effect on their physiology. Below this threshold, a decline in the photochemical activity of photosystem II (PSII) occurred, as evident by lower oxygen evolution rates, lower maximal photosynthetic yield of PSII values, and faster QA reoxidation rates. In 77 K chlorophyll fluorescence spectroscopy, a peak at 682 nm was observed. After ruling out the contribution of phycobilisome and iron stress-induced IsiA proteins, this band was attributed to the accumulation of partially assembled PSII. Surprisingly, the increase in the 682-nm peak was paralleled by a decrease in the 720-nm peak, dominated by PSI fluorescence. The effect on PSI was confirmed by measurements of the P700 photochemical activity. The loss of activity was the result of two processes: loss of PSI core proteins and changes in the organization of PSI complexes. Blue native-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis analysis revealed a Mn limitation-dependent dissociation of PSI trimers into monomers. The sensitive range for changes in the organization of the photosynthetic apparatus overlaps with the range of Mn concentrations measured in natural environments. We suggest that the ability to manipulate PSI content and organization allows cyanobacteria to balance electron transport rates between the photosystems. At naturally occurring Mn concentrations, such a mechanism will provide important protection against light-induced damage.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)571-579
Number of pages9
JournalPlant Physiology
Volume155
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2011

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