Incomplete development of chloroplast lamellae occurred when etiolated pea plants were greened under cycles of 2 min light, 118 min dark. Although the plastids had full photochemical activities, they were nearly agranal. They were also characterized by a high quantum requirement for whole chain electron transport in low light; this is thought to be the result of unequal light absorption by incompletely developed light-harvesting assemblies of photosystem I and II and a lack of regulation of excitation energy distribution between the two photosystems. Continuous illumination induced the final stages of membrane differentiation. These stages were primarily characterized by the appearance of grana stacking and an increase in photosynthetic unit size. A biphasic decrease in quantum requirement for whole chain electron transport correlated directly with the appearance of grana during the final steps of membrane assembly. Structural organization of the membrane may be related to the light-harvesting efficiency of the membrane.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology