Description: We have previously presented a graphical illustration of a strategy to improve photosynthetic conversion efficiencies by a reduction of the antenna size in photosynthetic reaction centers. During the current reporting period, we have made progress in demonstrating the conceptual correctness of this idea. Light-saturation studies for CO, in air were performed with an antenna-deficient mutant of Chlamydomonas (DS521) and the wild type (DES15). The light-saturated rate for CO(2), assimilation in mutant DS521 was about two times higher (187 Mu-mol.h(-1).mg chl(-1)) than that of the wild type, DES15 (95 Mu-mol.h(-1).mg chl(-1). Significantly, a partial linearization of the light-saturation curve was also observed. The light intensities that give half-saturation of the photosynthetic rate were 276 and 152 Mu-E.m(-2).s(-1) in DS521 and DES15, respectively. These results confirmed that DS521 has a smaller chlorophyll antenna size and demonstrated that the reduction of antenna size can indeed improve the overall efficiency of photon utilization. Corresponding experiments were also performed with CO(2), in helium. Under this anaerobic condition, no photoinhibition was observed, even at elevated light intensities. Photoinhibition occurs under aerobic conditions. The antenna-deficient mutant DS521 can also provide significant resistance to photoinhibition, in addition to the improvement in the overall efficiency in CO(2), fixation.
Date: May 3, 1999
Creator: Blankinship, S.L.; Greenbaum, E.; Lee, J.W. & Mets, L.
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