Journal of Applied Phycology

, Volume 23, Issue 3, pp 457–466 | Cite as

Effects of N supply on the accumulation of photosynthetic pigments and photoprotectors in Gracilaria tenuistipitata (Rhodophyta) cultured under UV radiation

  • José Bonomi BarufiEmail author
  • Nathalie Korbee
  • Mariana C. Oliveira
  • Félix L. Figueroa


We have studied the effects of nitrate supply under photosynthetic active radiation (PAR) plus ultraviolet radiation (UVR) exposure on photosynthetic pigments (chlorophyll a and carotenoids), photoprotective UV screen mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs), and photosynthetic parameters, including the maximum quantum yield (F v/F m) and electron transport rate (ETR) on the red agarophyte Gracilaria tenuistipitata. Apical tips of G. tenuistipitata were cultivated under ten different concentrations of NO 3 for 7 days. It has been shown that G. tenuistipitata cultured under laboratory conditions has the ability to accumulate high amounts of MAAs following a nitrate concentration-dependent manner under PAR + UVR. Two MAAs were identified, shinorine and porphyra-334. The relative concentration of the first increased under high concentrations of nitrate, while the second one decreased. The presence of antheraxanthin is reported for the first time in this macroalgae, which also contains zeaxanthin, lutein, and β-carotene. The accumulation of pigments, photoprotective compounds, and photosynthetic parameters of G. tenuistipitata is directly related to N availability. All variables decreased under low N supplies and reached constant maximum values with supplements higher than 0.5 mM NO 3 . Our results suggest a high potential to acclimation and photoprotection against stress factors (including high PAR and UVR) directly related to N availability for G. tenuistipitata.


Carotenoids Gracilaria tenuistipitata In vivo chlorophyll a fluorescence N availability Photoprotection Photosynthesis 



We thank the financial support of the Ministry of Science and Innovation of Spain (Project CGL2008 05407-C03-01) and Junta de Andalucía research group “Photobiology and Biotechnology of Marine Organisms” (RNM-295). We also acknowledge the fellowship to J.B. Barufi by Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior (CAPES) from the Ministry of Education in Brazil. M.C. Oliveira thanks the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq) (scholarships and research projects 470417/2006-4 and 301217/2007-6) and Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo (FAPESP). Finally, we thank Grazyna A. Bonomi for the language review.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • José Bonomi Barufi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Nathalie Korbee
    • 2
  • Mariana C. Oliveira
    • 1
  • Félix L. Figueroa
    • 2
  1. 1.Departamento de BotânicaInstituto de Biociências da Universidade de São PauloSão PauloBrazil
  2. 2.Departamento de Ecología y Geología, Facultad de CienciasUniversidad de MálagaMálagaSpain

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