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Enhanced photosynthesis and growth in atquac1 knockout mutants are due to altered organic acid accumulation and an increase in both stomatal and mesophyll conductance


Medeiros, David B; Martins, Samuel C V; Cavalcanti, João Henrique F; Daloso, Danilo M; Martinoia, Enrico; Nunes-Nesi, Adriano; DaMatta, Fábio M; Fernie, Alisdair R; Araújo, Wagner L (2016). Enhanced photosynthesis and growth in atquac1 knockout mutants are due to altered organic acid accumulation and an increase in both stomatal and mesophyll conductance. Plant Physiology, 170(1):86-101.

Abstract

Stomata control the exchange of CO2 and water vapor in land plants. Thus, whereas a constant supply of CO2 is required to maintain adequate rates of photosynthesis, the accompanying water losses must be tightly regulated to prevent dehydration and undesired metabolic changes. Accordingly, the uptake or release of ions and metabolites from guard cells is necessary to achieve normal stomatal function. The AtQUAC1, an R-type anion channel responsible for the release of malate from guard cells, is essential for efficient stomatal closure. Here, we demonstrate that mutant plants lacking AtQUAC1 accumulated higher levels of malate and fumarate. These mutant plants not only display slower stomatal closure in response to increased CO2 concentration and dark but are also characterized by improved mesophyll conductance. These responses were accompanied by increases in both photosynthesis and respiration rates, without affecting the activity of photosynthetic and respiratory enzymes and the expression of other transporter genes in guard cells, which ultimately led to improved growth. Collectively, our results highlight that the transport of organic acids plays a key role in plant cell metabolism and demonstrate that AtQUAC1 reduce diffusive limitations to photosynthesis, which, at least partially, explain the observed increments in growth under well-watered conditions.

Abstract

Stomata control the exchange of CO2 and water vapor in land plants. Thus, whereas a constant supply of CO2 is required to maintain adequate rates of photosynthesis, the accompanying water losses must be tightly regulated to prevent dehydration and undesired metabolic changes. Accordingly, the uptake or release of ions and metabolites from guard cells is necessary to achieve normal stomatal function. The AtQUAC1, an R-type anion channel responsible for the release of malate from guard cells, is essential for efficient stomatal closure. Here, we demonstrate that mutant plants lacking AtQUAC1 accumulated higher levels of malate and fumarate. These mutant plants not only display slower stomatal closure in response to increased CO2 concentration and dark but are also characterized by improved mesophyll conductance. These responses were accompanied by increases in both photosynthesis and respiration rates, without affecting the activity of photosynthetic and respiratory enzymes and the expression of other transporter genes in guard cells, which ultimately led to improved growth. Collectively, our results highlight that the transport of organic acids plays a key role in plant cell metabolism and demonstrate that AtQUAC1 reduce diffusive limitations to photosynthesis, which, at least partially, explain the observed increments in growth under well-watered conditions.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Department of Plant and Microbial Biology
07 Faculty of Science > Zurich-Basel Plant Science Center
Dewey Decimal Classification:580 Plants (Botany)
Language:English
Date:January 2016
Deposited On:12 Jan 2017 09:53
Last Modified:02 Feb 2018 11:27
Publisher:American Society of Plant Biologists
ISSN:0032-0889
OA Status:Closed
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1104/pp.15.01053
PubMed ID:26542441

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