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Roles of Lipids in Photosynthesis

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Lipids in Plant and Algae Development

Part of the book series: Subcellular Biochemistry ((SCBI,volume 86))

Abstract

Thylakoid membranes in cyanobacterial cells and chloroplasts of algae and higher plants are the sites of oxygenic photosynthesis. The lipid composition of the thylakoid membrane is unique and highly conserved among oxygenic photosynthetic organisms. Major lipids in thylakoid membranes are glycolipids, monogalactosyldiacylglycerol, digalactosyldiacylglycerol and sulfoquinovosyldiacylglycerol, and the phospholipid, phosphatidylglycerol. The identification of almost all genes involved in the biosynthesis of each lipid class over the past decade has allowed the generation and isolation of mutants of various photosynthetic organisms incapable of synthesizing specific lipids. Numerous studies using such mutants have revealed that these lipids play important roles not only in the formation of the lipid bilayers of thylakoid membranes but also in the folding and assembly of the protein subunits in photosynthetic complexes. In addition to the studies with the mutants, recent X-ray crystallography studies of photosynthetic complexes in thylakoid membranes have also provided critical information on the association of lipids with photosynthetic complexes and their activities. In this chapter, we summarize our current understanding about the structural and functional involvement of thylakoid lipids in oxygenic photosynthesis.

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Abbreviations

BN-PAGE:

Blue native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis

Chl:

Chlorophyll

Cyt:

Cytochrome

DCMU:

3-(3, 4-dichlorophenyl)-1,1-dimethylurea

DGDG:

Digalactosyldiacylglycerol

GlcADG:

Glucuronosyldiacylglycerol

LHC:

Light-harvesting chlorophyll-protein complex

MGDG:

Monogalactosyldiacylglycerol

MGlcDG:

Monoglucosyldiacylglycerol

PG:

Phosphatidylglycerol

PGP:

Phosphatidylglycerophosphate

Pi:

Phosphate

PQ:

Plastoquinone

PSI:

Photosystem I

PSII:

Photosystem II

SQDG:

Sulfoquinovosyldiacylglycerol

UDP:

Uridine 5′-diphosphate

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Acknowledgments

The work performed in the authors’ laboratory was supported by Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research and JST CREST from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology of Japan.

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Correspondence to Hajime Wada .

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© 2016 Springer International Publishing Switzerland

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Kobayashi, K., Endo, K., Wada, H. (2016). Roles of Lipids in Photosynthesis. In: Nakamura, Y., Li-Beisson, Y. (eds) Lipids in Plant and Algae Development. Subcellular Biochemistry, vol 86. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-25979-6_2

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