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Enhancement of susceptivity to photoinhibition and photooxidation in rice chlorophyll b-less mutants

Lin, Z.-F., Lin, G.-Z., Peng, C.-L.
Photosynthetica 2009 v.47 no.1 pp. 46-54
antheraxanthin, chlorophyll, electron transfer, energy, fluorescence, light intensity, lutein, mutants, oxidative stress, paraquat, photoinhibition, photooxidation, photosystem II, rice, thylakoids, ultrastructure, violaxanthin, zeaxanthin
Two rice chlorophyll (Chl) b-less mutants (VG28-1, VG30-5) and the respective wild type (WT) plant (cv. Zhonghua No. 11) were analyzed for the changes in Chl fluorescence parameters, xanthophyll cycle pool, and its de-epoxidation state under exposure to strong irradiance, SI (1 700 µmol m⁻² s⁻¹). We also examined alterations in the chloroplast ultrastructure of the mutants induced by methyl viologen (MV) photooxidation. During HI (0–3.5 h), the photoinactivation of photosystem 2 (PS2) appeared earlier and more severely in Chl b-less mutants than in the WT. The decreases in maximal photochemical efficiency of PS2 in the dark (Fᵥ/Fₘ), quantum efficiency of PS2 electron transport (ΦPS₂), photochemical quenching (qP), as well as rate of photochemistry (Pᵣₐₜₑ), and the increases in de-epoxidation state (DES) and rate of thermal dissipation of excitation energy (Dᵣₐₜₑ) were significantly greater in Chl b-mutants compared with the WT plant. A relatively larger xanthophyll pool and 78–83 % conversion of violaxanthin into antheraxanthin and zeaxanthin in the mutants after 3.5 h of HI was accompanied with a high ratio of inactive/total PS2 (0.55–0.73) and high 1–qP (0.57–0.68) which showed that the activities of the xanthophyll cycle were probably insufficient to protect the photosynthetic apparatus against photoinhibition. No apparent difference of chloroplast ultrastructure was found between Chl b-less mutants and WT plants grown under low, LI (180 µmol m⁻² s⁻¹) and high, HI (700 µmol m⁻² s⁻¹) irradiance. However, swollen chloroplasts and slight dilation of thylakoids occurred in both mutants and the WT grown under LI followed by MV treatment. These typical symptoms of photooxidative damage were aggravated as plants were exposed to HI. Distorted and loose scattered thylakoids were observed in particular in the Chl b-less mutants. A greater extent of photoinhibition and photooxidation in these mutants indicated that the susceptibility to HI and oxidative stresses was enhanced in the photosynthetic apparatus without Chl b most likely as a consequence of a smaller antenna size.