Biomembranes pp 189-191 | Cite as

Electric Field and Chloroplast Membranes

  • William A. Arnold
  • Jim Azzi


During green plant photosynthesis not all of the energy of the light absorbed by chlorophyll is used. A part, 2–3%, is re-emitted as fluorescence. A somewhat smaller part that we call delayed light is emitted at times of 10−5 sec to 3 hr after illumination, far too long to be fluorescence (1). This delayed light is closely connected with the process of photosynthesis and seems to be one of the few ways of studying the first steps in that process (2). While making such studies with “broken” chloroplasts, we observed that the delayed light could be stimulated by an electric field across the chloroplast suspension. This new effect is surprisingly large. A field of a few hundred volts/cm can increase the light emission by 50 times. We made a preliminary announcement of this phenomenon at the International Conference on the Photosynthetic Unit, held in Gatlinburg a year ago (3).


Applied Electric Field Electrical Effect Chloroplast Membrane Trap Hole Electron Volt 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    B. Strehler and W. Arnold, J. Gen. Physiol. 34, 809 (1951).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Walter Bertsch, J. R. Azzi, J. B. Davidson, Biochim. Biophys. Acta 143, 129 (1967).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    William Arnold and Jim Azzi, Photochem. Photobiol., in press.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    W. Junge and H. T. Witt, Z. Naturforsch. 23b, 244 (1968).Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    J. Barber and G. P. B. Kraan, Biochim. Biophys. Acta 197, 49, (1970).CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1971

Authors and Affiliations

  • William A. Arnold
    • 1
  • Jim Azzi
    • 1
  1. 1.Oak Ridge National LaboratoryOak RidgeUSA

Personalised recommendations