[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Using metabolic and transcriptomic phenotyping, we studied acclimation of cyanobacteria to low inorganic carbon (LC) conditions and the requirements for coordinated alteration of metabolism and gene expression. To analyse possible metabolic signals for LC sensing and compensating reactions, the carboxysome-less mutant ΔccmM and the photorespiratory mutant ΔglcD1/D2 were compared with wild-type (WT) Synechocystis. Metabolic phenotyping revealed accumulation of 2-phosphoglycolate (2PG) in ΔccmM and of glycolate in ΔglcD1/D2 in LC- but also in high inorganic carbon (HC)-grown mutant cells. The accumulation of photorespiratory metabolites provided evidence for the oxygenase activity of RubisCO at HC. The global gene expression patterns of HC-grown ΔccmM and ΔglcD1/D2 showed differential expression of many genes involved in photosynthesis, high-light stress and N assimilation. In contrast, the transcripts of LC-specific genes, such as those for inorganic carbon transporters and components of the carbon-concentrating mechanism (CCM), remained unchanged in HC cells. After a shift to LC, ΔglcD1/D2 and WT cells displayed induction of many of the LC-inducible genes, whereas ΔccmM lacked similar changes in expression. From the coincidence of the presence of 2PG in ΔccmM without CCM induction and of glycolate in ΔglcD1/D2 with CCM induction, we regard a direct role for 2PG as a metabolic signal for the induction of CCM during LC acclimation as less likely. Instead, our data suggest a potential role for glycolate as a signal molecule for enhanced expression of CCM genes.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In cyanobacteria, photorespiratory 2-phosphoglycolate (2PG) metabolism is mediated by three different routes, including one route involving the glycine decarboxylase complex (Gcv). It has been suggested that, in addition to conversion of 2PG into non-toxic intermediates, this pathway is important for acclimation to high-light. The photoreduction of O2 (Mehler reaction), which is mediated by two flavoproteins Flv1 and Flv3 in cyanobacteria, dissipates excess reductants under high-light by the four electron-reduction of oxygen to water. Single and double mutants defective in these processes were constructed to investigate the relation between photorespiratory 2PG-metabolism and the photoreduction of O2 in the cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803. The single mutants Δflv1, Δflv3, and ΔgcvT, as well as the double mutant Δflv1/ΔgcvT, were completely segregated but not the double mutant Δflv3/ΔgcvT, suggesting that the T-protein subunit of the Gcv (GcvT) and Flv3 proteins cooperate in an essential process. This assumption is supported by the following results: (1) The mutant Δflv3/ΔgcvT showed a considerable longer lag phase and sometimes bleached after shifts from slow (low light, air CO2) to rapid (standard light, 5% CO2) growing conditions. (2) Photoinhibition experiments indicated a decreased ability of the mutant Δflv3/ΔgcvT to cope with high-light. (3) Fluorescence measurements showed that the photosynthetic electron chain is reduced in this mutant. Our data suggest that the photorespiratory 2PG-metabolism and the photoreduction of O2, particularly that catalyzed by Flv3, cooperate during acclimation to high-light stress in cyanobacteria.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s00425-009-0972-9) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.