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Analysis of Photosynthetic Responses and Adaptation to Nitrogen Starvation in Chlorella Using In Vivo Chlorophyll Fluorescence

Abstract

Nitrogen (N) starvation resulted in degreening, inhibition of photosynthetic oxygen evolution and dark respiration, reduced survival, and increased age-specific mortality in both Chlorella fusca and Chlorella vulgaris. Analysis of in vivo chlorophyll (Chl) fluorescence induction kinetics revealed the presence of N-starvation-induced changes at the level of degreened thylakoids in both species. These changes included decreased yield of the photochemistry of photosystem 2 (PS2), and a declined photosynthetic efficiency. Synthesis of secondary carotenoids represented a biochemical change in carotenogenesis that had a photoprotective effect in degreened C. fusca. This inferred photoprotection was reflected in the delayed inhibition of oxygen evolution and improved survival of C. fusca under N-starvation. The effect was further elucidated by comparison with C. vulgaris which was not able to synthesize secondary carotenoids under the same conditions.

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Sayed, O. Analysis of Photosynthetic Responses and Adaptation to Nitrogen Starvation in Chlorella Using In Vivo Chlorophyll Fluorescence. Photosynthetica 35, 611–619 (1998). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1006995410998

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  • carotenoids
  • oxygen evolution
  • photosystem 2
  • species differences
  • respiration