When following low-temperature acclimation (5 days at 2°C) of cold-resistant plants of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana Heynh. (L.), ecotype Columbia) in relation to the changes in chloroplast ultrastructure, we registered the high efficiency of hardening and the ability of hardened plants to lower a threshold of frost damage by about 3°C. During hardening, the area of grana in the chloroplasts more than doubled, with considerably increased numbers of thylakoids per granum and thylakoids per chloroplast. The rate of apparent photosynthesis decreased to lesser extent than the rate of dark respiration, as a result the content of soluble sugars increased fourfold, ensuring an adaptive reorganization of metabolism, which enabled the hardened plants to survive even at below-zero temperatures (up to −7°C). The authors conclude that a considerable increase in the number of thylakoids in the chloroplasts helps maintain photosynthesis at low above-zero temperatures and is a prerequisite for the accumulation of soluble sugars in Arabidopsis leaves.
Russian Journal of Plant Physiology – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 12, 2014
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