Photosynthetic plants convert light energy into ATP and NADPH in photosynthetic electron transfer and photophosphorylation, and synthesize mainly carbohydrates in the Calvin-Benson cycle. Here we report the enhancement of photosynthesis and growth of plants by introducing the gene of an algal cytochrome c6, which has been evolutionarily eliminated from higher plant chloroplasts, into the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. At 60 d after planting, the plant height, leaf length and root length of the transformants were 1.3-, 1.1- and 1.3-fold those in the wild-type plants, respectively. At the same time, in the transgenic plants, the amounts of chlorophyll, protein, ATP, NADPH and starch were 1.2-, 1.1-, 1.9-, 1.4- and 1.2-fold those in the wild-type plants, respectively. The CO2 assimilation capacity of the transgenic plants was 1.3-fold that of the wild type. Moreover, in transgenic Arabidopsis expressing algal cytochrome c6, the 1 - qP, which reflects the reduced state of the plastoquinone pool, is 30% decreased compared with the wild type. These results show that the electron transfer of photosynthesis of Arabidopsis would be accelerated by the expression of algal cytochrome c6. Our results demonstrate that the growth and photosynthesis of Arabidopsis plants could be enhanced by the expression of the algal cytochrome c6 gene.
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