Scientific article
Open access

Short-term acclimation of the photosynthetic electron transfer chain to changing light: a mathematical model

Published inPhilosophical transactions - Royal Society. Biological sciences, vol. 369, no. 1640, 20130223
Publication date2014

Photosynthetic eukaryotes house two photosystems with distinct light absorption spectra. Natural fluctuations in light quality and quantity can lead to unbalanced or excess excitation, compromising photosynthetic efficiency and causing photodamage. Consequently, these organisms have acquired several distinct adaptive mechanisms, collectively referred to as non-photochemical quenching (NPQ) of chlorophyll fluorescence, which modulates the organization and function of the photosynthetic apparatus. The ability to monitor NPQ processes fluorometrically has led to substantial progress in elucidating the underlying molecular mechanisms. However, the relative contribution of distinct NPQ mechanisms to variable light conditions in different photosynthetic eukaryotes remains unclear. Here, we present a mathematical model of the dynamic regulation of eukaryotic photosynthesis using ordinary differential equations. We demonstrate that, for Chlamydomonas, our model recapitulates the basic fluorescence features of short-term light acclimation known as state transitions and discuss how the model can be iteratively refined by comparison with physiological experiments to further our understanding of light acclimation in different species.

  • Photosynthesis
  • Light acclimation
  • State transitions
  • Non‐photochemical quenching
  • Chlamydomonas reinhardtii
  • Mathematical modeling
Citation (ISO format)
EBENHÖH, Oliver et al. Short-term acclimation of the photosynthetic electron transfer chain to changing light: a mathematical model. In: Philosophical transactions - Royal Society. Biological sciences, 2014, vol. 369, n° 1640, p. 20130223. doi: 10.1098/rstb.2013.0223
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Article (Accepted version)
ISSN of the journal0962-8436

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