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  • Lhcx proteins provide photoprotection via thermal dissipation of absorbed light in the diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum. Nature communications Buck, J. M., Sherman, J., B├írtulos, C. R., Serif, M., Halder, M., Henkel, J., Falciatore, A., Lavaud, J., Gorbunov, M. Y., Kroth, P. G., Falkowski, P. G., Lepetit, B. 2019; 10 (1): 4167


    Diatoms possess an impressive capacity for rapidly inducible thermal dissipation of excess absorbed energy (qE), provided by the xanthophyll diatoxanthin and Lhcx proteins. By knocking out the Lhcx1 and Lhcx2 genes individually in Phaeodactylum tricornutum strain 4 and complementing the knockout lines with different Lhcx proteins, multiple mutants with varying qE capacities are obtained, ranging from zero to high values. We demonstrate that qE is entirely dependent on the concerted action of diatoxanthin and Lhcx proteins, with Lhcx1, Lhcx2 and Lhcx3 having similar functions. Moreover, we establish a clear link between Lhcx1/2/3 mediated inducible thermal energy dissipation and a reduction in the functional absorption cross-section of photosystem II. This regulation of the functional absorption cross-section can be tuned by altered Lhcx protein expression in response to environmental conditions. Our results provide a holistic understanding of the rapidly inducible thermal energy dissipation process and its mechanistic implications in diatoms.

    View details for DOI 10.1038/s41467-019-12043-6

    View details for PubMedID 31519883

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC6744471