The light-harvesting antenna of higher plant photosystem (PS) I is known to be composed of four different types of light-harvesting complex (LHC) proteins (Lhca1–4). However, the genomic sequence of Arabidopsis thaliana contains open reading frames coding for two additional LHC type proteins (Lhca5–6) that are presumably associated with PSI. While Lhca6 might not be expressed at all, ESTs have been detected for the Lhca5 gene in Arabidopsis and a number of other plant species. Here we demonstrate the presence of the Lhca5 gene product in the thylakoid membrane of Arabidopsis as an additional type of Lhca-protein associated with PSI. Lhca5 seems to be regulated differently from the other LHC proteins since Lhca5 mRNA levels increase under high light conditions. Analyses reported here of Lhca5 in plants lacking individual Lhca1–4 proteins show that it is more abundant in plants lacking Lhca1/4, and suggest that it interacts in a direct physical fashion with Lhca2 or Lhca3. We propose that Lhca5 binds chlorophylls in a similar fashion to the other Lhca proteins and is associated with PSI only in sub-stoichiometric amounts.
Plant Molecular Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Dec 21, 2004
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