- Plants and algae are faced with a conundrum: harvesting sufficient light to drive their metabolic needs while dissipating light in excess to prevent photodamage, a process known as nonphotochemical quenching. A slowly relaxing form of energy dissipation, termed qH, is critical for plants’ survival under abiotic stress; however, qH location in the photosynthetic membrane is unresolved. Here, we tested whether we could isolate subcomplexes from plants in which qH was induced that would remain in an energy-dissipative state.
- Non-photochemical quenching of excess excitation energy is an important photoprotective mechanism in photosynthetic organisms. In Arabidopsis thaliana, a high quenching capacity is constitutively present and depends on the PsbS protein. In the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, non-photochemical quenching becomes activated upon high light acclimation and requires the accumulation of light harvesting complex stress-related (LHCSR) proteins. Expression of the PsbS protein in C. reinhardtii has not been reported yet.