Characterization of chlorophyll f synthase heterologously produced in Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002

Gaozhong Shen, Daniel P. Canniffe, Ming Yang Ho, Vasily Kurashov, Art van der Est, John H. Golbeck, Donald A. Bryant

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


In diverse terrestrial cyanobacteria, Far-Red Light Photoacclimation (FaRLiP) promotes extensive remodeling of the photosynthetic apparatus, including photosystems (PS)I and PSII and the cores of phycobilisomes, and is accompanied by the concomitant biosynthesis of chlorophyll (Chl) d and Chl f. Chl f synthase, encoded by chlF, is a highly divergent paralog of psbA; heterologous expression of chlF from Chlorogloeopsis fritscii PCC 9212 led to the light-dependent production of Chl f in Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 (Ho et al., Science 353, aaf9178 (2016)). In the studies reported here, expression of the chlF gene from Fischerella thermalis PCC 7521 in the heterologous system led to enhanced synthesis of Chl f. N-terminally [His] 10 -tagged ChlF 7521 was purified and identified by immunoblotting and tryptic-peptide mass fingerprinting. As predicted from its sequence similarity to PsbA, ChlF bound Chl a and pheophytin a at a ratio of ~ 3–4:1, bound β-carotene and zeaxanthin, and was inhibited in vivo by 3-(3,4-dichlorophenyl)-1,1-dimethylurea. Cross-linking studies and the absence of copurifying proteins indicated that ChlF forms homodimers. Flash photolysis of ChlF produced a Chl a triplet that decayed with a lifetime (1/e) of ~ 817 µs and that could be attributed to intersystem crossing by EPR spectroscopy at 90 K. When the chlF 7521 gene was expressed in a strain in which the psbD1 and psbD2 genes had been deleted, significantly more Chl f was produced, and Chl f levels could be further enhanced by specific growth-light conditions. Chl f synthesized in Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002 was inserted into trimeric PSI complexes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)77-92
Number of pages16
JournalPhotosynthesis research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 1 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Plant Science
  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Characterization of chlorophyll f synthase heterologously produced in Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this