Low temperature-induced chloroplast relocation mediated by a blue light receptor, phototropin 2, in fern gametophytes


Chloroplast movement in response to light has been known more than 100 years. Chloroplasts move towards weak light and move away from strong light. Dark-induced relocation, called dark positioning, has also been shown. However, the effects of other stimuli on chloroplast movement have not been well characterized. Here we studied low temperature-induced chloroplast relocation (termed cold positioning) in prothallial cells of the gametophytes of the fern Adiantum capillus-veneris. Under weak light chloroplasts in prothallial cells accumulated along the periclinal wall at 25°C, but they moved towards anticlinal walls when the prothalli were subsequently transferred to 4°C. A temperature shift from 25° to 10°C or lower was enough to induce cold positioning, and high-intensity light enhanced the response. Nuclei also relocated from the periclinal position (a position along periclinal walls) to the anticlinal position (a position along anticlinal walls) under cold temperature, whereas mitochondria did not. Cold positioning was not observed in mutant fern gametophytes defective of the blue light photoreceptor, phototropin 2.

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The authors thank Ms. Ayumi Iwata (National Institute for Basic Biology), for maintenance of plant materials, and Dr. Inga Oberpichler (University of Karlsruhe), for providing valuable information. We also thank John Christie (University of Glasgow) for his careful reading of this manuscript and English editing. This work was partly supported by Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (on Priority Areas, no. 17084006) from the Ministry of Education, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan to M.W.

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Correspondence to Masamitsu Wada.

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Kodama, Y., Tsuboi, H., Kagawa, T. et al. Low temperature-induced chloroplast relocation mediated by a blue light receptor, phototropin 2, in fern gametophytes. J Plant Res 121, 441–448 (2008).

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  • Adiantum capillus-veneris
  • Chloroplast relocation
  • Cold positioning
  • Fern
  • Low temperature
  • Phototropin