Different Effects of Malate on the Activities of Photosystem II in Detached Leaves of Maize and Tobacco


Malate is the first stable product after CO2 is fixed in NADP-dependent malic enzyme (NADP-ME) type of C4 plants, which transfers CO2 and the reducing equivalent from mesophyll cell (MC) to vascular bundle sheath cell (BSC) chloroplasts and affects the redox state of BSC. The aim of this experiment is to investigate the effect of exogenous malate on the activity of photosystem II (PS II) in C4 and C3 plants. The leaf discs from the 5th fully expanded leaves of maize (NADP-ME type C4 plants) and the 10th fully expanded leaves of tobacco (C3 plants) were treated with malate of 50, 100 μM and the chlorophyll fluorescence parameters were measured. Malate treatments decreased the photochemical reaction efficiency (FV/FM) in maize leaves, as a result of rising in initial fluorescence (FO) and decreasing in maximal fluorescence (FM). The number of active PS II reaction center (RC) per excited cross section (RC/CS) declined in malate-treated maize, suggesting that malate inactivated PS II RC. Malate treatments also increased Wk, representing the severity of oxygen-evolving complex (OEC) damage, and decreased the rate of photosynthetic oxygen evolution. We conclude that exogenous malate regulates the activity and structure of PS II in C4 plant maize. No significant changes in the activity of PS II were observed in malate-treated C3 plant tobacco. It is suggested that the short term malate treatment will inhibit PS II of leaves which have C4 anatomy and C4 enzymes.

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Cui, Z. , Zhang, A. , Hu, Z. , Zhang, L. , Fan, J. , Zhu, Y. , Hu, K. , Ruan, Y. and Guan, Y. (2015) Different Effects of Malate on the Activities of Photosystem II in Detached Leaves of Maize and Tobacco. American Journal of Plant Sciences, 6, 1734-1741. doi: 10.4236/ajps.2015.611173.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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