Photosynthesis Research

, Volume 53, Issue 2–3, pp 149–159 | Cite as

Multiple strategies for a high light existence in a tropical marine macroalga

  • Linda A. Franklin
  • Anthony W.D. Larkum


Acclimation to high light conditions on the top of coral reefs was examined in the coenocytic, filamentous green macroalga Chlorodesmis fastigiata (C. Ag.) Ducker. Despite having a pool of violaxanthin, high light does not induce formation of zeaxanthin in this macroalga. Exposure to 11 and 33% of surface irradiance resulted in parallel, reversible declines in Fv/Fmand in the number of functional PSII centers. The quantum requirement for PSII inactivation was calculated to be approx. 2×107photons. Recovery of PSII activity after low photon exposures did not depend on protein synthesis, unlike at higher photon exposures, where recovery was inhibited by 50% in the presence of lincomycin. Accumulation of inactive, quenching PSII centers is proposed as a mechanism of energy dissipation; only some of these centers require protein synthesis for reactivation. In natural-sized populations, midday photoinhibition was greater in filament tips than in bases, but the number of inactive PSII centers within entire filaments did not significantly change over the course of the day. It is proposed that the higher chlorophyll concentration in the tips provides protective shading to chloroplasts in lower regions, and that cytoplasmic streaming of chloroplasts within this siphonous alga limits the cumulative exposure to high light, thereby providing another level of protection from high light stress.

Chlorodesmis fastigiata D1 protein fluorescence macroalgae photoinhibition photosynthesis Photosystem II heterogeneity 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Linda A. Franklin
    • 1
  • Anthony W.D. Larkum
    • 2
  1. 1.Research School of Biological Sciences, Institute of Advanced StudiesThe Australian National UniversityCanberraAustralia
  2. 2.School of Biological SciencesThe University of SydneySydneyAustralia

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