, Volume 197, Issue 2, pp 306–312 | Cite as

Acclimation of Arabidopsis thaliana to the light environment: changes in photosynthetic function

  • Robin G. Walters
  • Peter Horton


Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh. cv. Landsberg erecta was grown under light regimes of differing spectral qualities, which results in differences in the stoichiometries of the two photosynthetic reaction centres. The acclimative value of these changes was investigated by assessing photosynthetic function in these plants when exposed to two spectrally distinct actinic lights. Plants grown in an environment enriched in far-red light were better able to make efficient use of non-saturating levels of actinic light enriched in long-wavelength red light. Simultaneous measurements of chlorophyll fluorescence and absorption changes at 820 nm indicated that differences between plants grown under alternative light regimes can be ascribed to imbalances in excitation of photosystems I and II (PSI, PSII). Measurements of chlorophyll fluorescence emission and excitation spectra at 77 K provided strong evidence that there was little or no difference in the composition or function of PSI or PSII between the two sets of plants, implying that changes in photosynthetic stoichiometry are primarily responsible for the observed differences in photosynthetic function.

Key words

Arabidopsis Photosynthesis Chlorophyll fluorescence Oxygen evolution 





far-red light


highirradiance FR-enriched light (400 μmol·m−2·s−1, R∶FR = 0.72)


high-irradiance white light (400 μmol·m−2 1·1 s−1R∶FR = 1.40)


light-harvesting complex of PSI, PSII


quenching of dark-level chlorophyll fluorescence


non-photochemical quenching of variable chlorophyll fluorescence


photochemical quenching of variable chlorophyll fluorescence


red light


ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robin G. Walters
    • 1
  • Peter Horton
    • 1
  1. 1.Robert Hill Institute, Department of Molecular Biology and BiotechnologyUniversity of SheffieldSheffieldUK

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