The molecular basis of high light photoacclimation in diatoms


The photosynthetic efficiency and productivity of diatoms may depend on the light environment which can be highly variable in aquatic ecosystems. To maintain opitmal photosynthesis in a permanently changing environment, diatoms have evolved a number of regulatory mechnanisms. The photoprotective NPQ (non-photochemical fluorescence quenching) process allows the plastid to safely dissipate the excess energy absorbed during a light stress. The extend of NPQ can be rather high in diatoms. Xanthophyll pigmentns and specific light-harvesting complex (LHC) polypeptides are necessary for the NPQ mechanism. We want to address the question how the organization and composition (polypeptide and pigment) of the LHC antenna enable the diatoms to cope with the stressful iincrease of light intensity. Especially, we want to gain knowledge on the LHC polypeptide(s) involved in the response of the cells to hight light, and to identify the special LHC antenna polypeptide(s) possibly involved iin the control of the NPQ process. In this context, we will focus on a particular group of these polypeptids: the High Light Induced Proteins (HLIPs). In diatoms, nothing is known concerning their location in the LHC antenna, their regulation as a function of light at the gene and protein levels, and their role in the physiological response of the diatoms to high light stress. We will study these aspects of the acclimation to high light in diatoms by coupling a proteomic approach on the LHC system, gene expression analysis versus light, in vivo genetic modulation of HLIPs and physiological characterisation.

  • Lavaud, Johanne - Projektleiter*in
  • FB Biologie
Name Finanzierungstyp Kategorie Kennziffer
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft Drittmittel Forschungsförderprogramm 729/06
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Laufzeit: 01.10.2006 – 30.09.2009