Photosynthesis Research

, Volume 124, Issue 1, pp 67–75 | Cite as

Temperature dependence of in vitro Rubisco kinetics in species of Flaveria with different photosynthetic mechanisms

  • Juan Alejandro Perdomo
  • Amanda P. Cavanagh
  • David S. Kubien
  • Jeroni GalmésEmail author
Regular Paper


There is general consensus in the literature that plants with different photosynthetic mechanisms (i.e. C3 vs. C4) have Rubiscos characterised by different kinetic performances. However, potential differences in the temperature dependencies of Rubisco kinetic parameters between C3 and C4 plants are uncertain. Accordingly, six species of Flaveria with contrasting photosynthetic mechanisms (C3, C3/C4 and C4) were selected and their Rubisco Michaelis–Menten constants for CO2 and RuBP (K c and K RuBP), carboxylase catalytic turnover rate (\({k_{\text{cat}}}^{\text{c}}\)) and CO2/O2 specificity factor (S c/o) were measured between 10 and 40 °C. The results confirmed different Rubisco characteristics between C3 and C4 plants. Rubisco from the C3 species had higher E a for K c and \({k_{\text{cat}}}^{\text{c}}\) than that from C4 species, which were translated into differences in the temperature response of the carboxylase catalytic efficiency (\({k_{\text{cat}}}^{\text{c}}\)/K c). However, E a did not differ for S c/o or K RuBP. Although a mechanism remains uncertain, it appears that the Asp/Glu-149-Ala and Met-309-Ile substitutions lead to differences in the temperature responses of catalysis between C3 and C4 Rubiscos in Flaveria. Therefore, the above observations are consistent with the fact that C3 species have a higher photosynthetic efficiency and ecological dominance in cool environments, with respect to C4 species in temperate environments.


C3 C4 Kinetics Photosynthesis Rubisco Temperature 



This work was partly supported by contract AGL2009-07999 (Plan Nacional, Spain) and a NSERC Discovery Grant (Canada, 327103-2008) awarded to JG and DSK, respectively. JAP was recipient of a FPI grant from the Govern de les Illes Balears. We would like to acknowledge Dr. Maxim Kapralov (Australian National University) for his helpful comments on a previous version of the manuscript, Dr. Spencer Whitney (Australian National University) for his comment on residue 149 and Dr. Josep Cifre (Universitat de les Illes Balears) for his statistical advice.

Supplementary material

11120_2015_92_MOESM1_ESM.docx (62 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 61 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Juan Alejandro Perdomo
    • 1
  • Amanda P. Cavanagh
    • 2
  • David S. Kubien
    • 2
  • Jeroni Galmés
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Research Group on Plant Biology Under Mediterranean ConditionsUniversitat de les Illes BalearsPalmaSpain
  2. 2.Department of BiologyUniversity of New BrunswickFrederictonCanada

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