The Synechocystis sp. strain PCC 6803, which has a T192H mutation in the D2 protein of photosystem II, is an obligate photoheterotroph due to the lack of assembled photosystem II complexes. A secondary mutant, Rg2, has been selected that retains the T192H mutation but is able to grow photoautotrophically. Restoration of photoautotrophic growth in this mutant was caused by early termination at position 294 in the Slr2013 protein. The T192H mutant with truncated Slr2013 forms fully functional photosystem II reaction centers that differ from wild-type reaction centers only by a 30% higher rate of charge recombination between the primary electron acceptor, Q A-, and the donor side and by a reduced stability of the oxidized form of the redox-active Tyr residue, YD, in the D2 protein. This suggests that the T192H mutation itself did not directly affect electron transfer components, but rather affected protein folding and/or stable assembly of photosystem II, and that Slr2013 is involved in the folding of the D2 protein and the assembly of photosystem II. Besides participation in photosystem II assembly, Slr2013 plays a critical role in the cell, because the corresponding gene cannot be deleted completely under conditions in which photosystem II is dispensable. Truncation of Slr2013 by itself does not affect photosynthetic activity of Synechocystis sp. strain PCC 6803. Slr2013 is annotated in CyanoBase as a hypothetical protein and shares a DUF58 family signature with other hypothetical proteins of unknown function. Genes for close homologues of Slr2013 are found in other cyanobacteria (Nostoc punctiforme, Anabaena sp. strain PCC 7120, and Thermosynechococcus elongatus BP-1), and apparent orthologs of this protein are found in Eubacteria and Archaea, but not in eukaryotes. We suggest that Slr2013 regulates functional assembly of photosystem II and has at least one other important function in the cell.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology