Editors' ChoicePlant biology

Avoiding the Noon Day Sun

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science's STKE  20 Mar 2001:
Vol. 2001, Issue 74, pp. tw4
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2001.74.tw4

Chloroplasts of the plant Arabidopsis convert light to metabolic energy--up to a point. When the incident light is simply too intense, the chloroplasts shuffle off to the sides of the cell to find some shade near the adjacent cells' walls. Under more moderate light conditions, the chloroplasts spread out over the face of the cell to capture as many photons as possible. Kagawa et al. have now identified a protein that helps regulate this process, NPL1, that resembles a known blue-light photoreceptor. Thus, the plant appears to fine-tune and protect its light-harvesting capabilities by using photoreceptors to direct subcellular compartmentalization.

T. Kagawa, T. Sakai, N. Suetsugu, K. Oikawa, S. Ishiguro, T. Kato, S. Tabata, K. Okada, M. Wada, Arabidopsis NPL1: A phototropin homolog controlling the chloroplast high-light avoidance response. Science 291, 2138-2141 (2001). [Abstract] [Full Text]

Stay Connected to Science Signaling