Photosynthesis Research

, Volume 46, Issue 1–2, pp 151–158 | Cite as

The cyanobacterium Synechococcus modulates Photosystem II function in response to excitation stress through D1 exchange

  • Gunnar Öquist
  • Douglas Campbell
  • Adrian K. Clarke
  • Petter Gustafsson


In this minireview we discuss effects of excitation stress on the molecular organization and function of PS II as induced by high light or low temperature in the cyanobacterium Synechococcus sp. PCC 7942. Synechococcus displays PS II plasticity by transiently replacing the constitutive D1 form (D1:1) with another form (D1:2) upon exposure to excitation stress. The cells thereby counteract photoinhibition by increasing D1 turn over and modulating PS II function. A comparison between the cyanobacterium Synechococcus and plants shows that in cyanobacteria, with their large phycobilisomes, resistance to photoinhibition is mainly through the dynamic properties (D1 turnover and quenching) of the reaction centre. In contrast, plants use antenna quenching in the light-harvesting complex as an important means to protect the reaction center from excessive excitation.

Key words

light harvesting photoinhibition psbA genes reaction center 



reaction center protein of Photosystem II


the reaction center of Photosystem II


the primary quinone acceptor of Photosystem II


tyrosine electron donor to P680


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gunnar Öquist
    • 1
  • Douglas Campbell
    • 1
  • Adrian K. Clarke
    • 1
  • Petter Gustafsson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Plant PhysiologyUniversity of UmeåUmeåSweden

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