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Photosynthetic and Respiratory Rates of Two Psychrophilic Diatoms

Chase Van Baalen
Plant Physiology
Vol. 78, No. 4 (Aug., 1985), pp. 799-802
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4269430
Page Count: 4
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Photosynthetic and Respiratory Rates of Two Psychrophilic Diatoms
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Abstract

The photosynthetic rates in two psychrophilic diatoms, Chaetoceros sp. strain K3-10 and Nitzschia sp. K3-3 for cells grown at 0°C were 8 to 10 microliters O2 evolved per milligram dry weight per hour, and 10-fold higher, about 80 for cells grown at 10°C. The respiration rates followed the same pattern, with a value of around 1 microliter dark uptake per milligram dry weight per hour for both organisms grown at 0°C, and 6 to 10 for cells grown at 10°C. When cells grown at 0°C were immediately shifted to 10°C or cells grown at 10°C were shifted to 0°C, the respiratory rates quickly adapted to values characteristics of cells grown at the shift temperature. On the other hand, the light-saturated rate of O2 evolution showed much less immediate adaptation, especially on the up shift, 0° to 10°C. The chlorophyll a content of 0°C grown cells was about 0.5% of dry weight, in 10°C grown cells 1.3% (strain K3-10) and 2.2% (strain K3-3). In addition to a diminished chlorophyll a content in 0°C grown cells, there seemed proportionally (by absorbance and calculation) less c to a than in 10°C grown cells. The relative fluorescence excitation spectra of 680-nm emission also showed a lower contribution by both chlorophyll c and fucoxanthin in 0°C grown cells of Chaetoceros sp. strain K3-10 as compared to 10°C grown cells. The data at hand suggest that in psychrophilic diatoms continuously growing at 0°C there may be problems associated with synthesis of an effective accessory pigment system, and as a working hypothesis it is suggested this is related to restriction of synthesis of one or several accessory pigment proteins.

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