GUN4-porphyrin Complexes Bind The ChlH/GUN5 Subunit Of Mg-Chelatase And Promote Chlorophyll Biosynthesis In Arabidopsis

Publisher:
Amer Soc Plant Biologists
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Citation:
The Plant Cell, 2011, 23 (4), pp. 1449 - 1467
Issue Date:
2011-01
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The GENOMES UNCOUPLED4 (GUN4) protein stimulates chlorophyll biosynthesis by activating Mg-chelatase, the enzyme that commits protoporphyrin IX to chlorophyll biosynthesis. This stimulation depends on GUN4 binding the ChlH subunit of Mg-chelatase and the porphyrin substrate and product of Mg-chelatase. After binding porphyrins, GUN4 associates more stably with chloroplast membranes and was proposed to promote interactions between ChlH and chloroplast membranes-the site of Mg-chelatase activity. GUN4 was also proposed to attenuate the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) by binding and shielding light-exposed porphyrins from collisions with O-2. To test these proposals, we first engineered Arabidopsis thaliana plants that express only porphyrin binding-deficient forms of GUN4. Using these transgenic plants and particular mutants, we found that the porphyrin binding activity of GUN4 and Mg-chelatase contribute to the accumulation of chlorophyll, GUN4, and Mg-chelatase subunits. Also, we found that the porphyrin binding activity of GUN4 and Mg-chelatase affect the associations of GUN4 and ChlH with chloroplast membranes and have various effects on the expression of ROS-inducible genes. Based on our findings, we conclude that ChlH and GUN4 use distinct mechanisms to associate with chloroplast membranes and that mutant alleles of GUN4 and Mg-chelatase genes cause sensitivity to intense light by a mechanism that is potentially complex.
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