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Maximum fluorescence and electron transport kinetics determined by light-induced fluorescence transients (LIFT) for photosynthesis phenotyping

Keller, Beat, Vass, Imre, Matsubara, Shizue, Paul, Kenny, Jedmowski, Christoph, Pieruschka, Roland, Nedbal, Ladislav, Rascher, Uwe, Muller, Onno
Photosynthesis research 2019 v.140 no.2 pp. 221-233
anaerobic conditions, automation, chemical inhibitors, chlorophyll, electron transfer, fluorescence, fluorometry, leaves, light intensity, phenotype, photosystem II, spinach, thylakoids
Photosynthetic phenotyping requires quick characterization of dynamic traits when measuring large plant numbers in a fluctuating environment. Here, we evaluated the light-induced fluorescence transient (LIFT) method for its capacity to yield rapidly fluorometric parameters from 0.6 m distance. The close approximation of LIFT to conventional chlorophyll fluorescence (ChlF) parameters is shown under controlled conditions in spinach leaves and isolated thylakoids when electron transport was impaired by anoxic conditions or chemical inhibitors. The ChlF rise from minimum fluorescence (Fₒ) to maximum fluorescence induced by fast repetition rate (Fₘ₋FRR) flashes was dominated by reduction of the primary electron acceptor in photosystem II (QA). The subsequent reoxidation of QA⁻ was quantified using the relaxation of ChlF in 0.65 ms (Fᵣ₁) and 120 ms (Fᵣ₂) phases. Reoxidation efficiency of QA⁻ (Fᵣ₁/Fᵥ, where Fᵥ = Fₘ₋FRR − Fₒ) decreased when electron transport was impaired, while quantum efficiency of photosystem II (Fᵥ/Fₘ) showed often no significant effect. ChlF relaxations of the LIFT were similar to an independent other method. Under increasing light intensities, Fᵣ₂′/Fq′ (where Fᵣ₂′ and Fq′ represent Fᵣ₂ and Fᵥ in the light-adapted state, respectively) was hardly affected, whereas the operating efficiency of photosystem II (Fq′/Fₘ′) decreased due to non-photochemical quenching. Fₘ₋FRR was significantly lower than the ChlF maximum induced by multiple turnover (Fₘ₋MT) flashes. However, the resulting Fᵥ/Fₘ and Fq′/Fₘ′ from both flashes were highly correlated. The LIFT method complements Fᵥ/Fₘ with information about efficiency of electron transport. Measurements in situ and from a distance facilitate application in high-throughput and automated phenotyping.