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We performed spectroscopic and functional characterization on cyanobacterium Synechocystis PCC6803 with mutations of charged residues of the cytoplasmic side of cytochrome (Cyt) b559 in photosystem II (PSII). All of the mutant cells grew photoautotrophically and assembled stable PSII. However, R7Eα, R17Eα and R17Lβ mutant cells grew significantly slower and were more susceptible to photoinhibition than wild-type cells. The adverse effects of the arginine mutations on the activity and the stability of PSII were in the following order (R17Lβ>R7Eα>R17Eα and R17Aα). All these arginine mutants exhibited normal period-four oscillation in oxygen yield. Thermoluminescence characteristics indicated a slight decrease in the stability of the S3QB(-)/S2QB(-) charge pairs in the R7Eα and R17Lβ mutant cells. R7Eα and R17Lβ PSII core complexes contained predominantly the low potential form of Cyt b559. EPR results indicated the displacement of one of the two axial ligands to the heme of Cyt b559 in R7Eα and R17Lβ mutant reaction centers. Our results demonstrate that the electrostatic interactions between these arginine residues and the heme propionates of Cyt b559 are important to the structure and redox properties of Cyt b559. In addition, the blue light-induced nonphotochemical quenching was significantly attenuated and its recovery was accelerated in the R7Lα and R17Lβ mutant cells. Furthermore, ultra performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry results showed that the PQ pool was more reduced in the R7Eα and R17Lβ mutant cells than wild-type cells in the dark. Our data support a functional role of Cyt b559 in protection of PSII under photoinhibition conditions in vivo. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


Yi-Fang Chiu, Yung-Han Chen, Mercedes Roncel, Preston L Dilbeck, Jine-Yung Huang, Shyue-Chu Ke, José M Ortega, Robert L Burnap, Hsiu-An Chu. Spectroscopic and functional characterization of cyanobacterium Synechocystis PCC 6803 mutants on the cytoplasmic-side of cytochrome b559 in photosystem II. Biochimica et biophysica acta. 2013 Apr;1827(4):507-19

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PMID: 23399490

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