Oxygen evolution is inhibited when leaves of chilling-sensitive plants like cucumber are treated at 0°C in the dark. The activity is restored by moderate illumination at room temperature. We examined the changes in the redox state of the Mn-cluster in cucumber leaves in the processes of dark-chilling inhibition and subsequent light-induced reactivation by means of thermoluminescence (TL). A TL B-band arising from S2QB- charge recombination in PSII was observed upon single-flash illumination of untreated leaves, whereas four flashes were required to yield the B-band after dark-chilling treatment for 24 h. This three-step delay indicates that over-reduced states of the Mn-cluster such as the S-2 state were formed during the treatment. Fitting analysis of the flash-number dependence of the TL intensities showed that the Mn-cluster was more reduced with a longer period of the treatment and that S-3 was the lowest S-state detectable in the dark-chilled leaves. Measurements of the Mn content by atomic absorption spectroscopy showed that Mn atoms were gradually released from PSII during the dark-chilling treatment but re-bound to PSII by illumination at 30°C. Thus, dark-chilling inhibition of oxygen evolution can be ascribed to the disintegration of the Mn-cluster due to its over-reduction. The observation of the S-3 state in the present in vivo system strongly suggests that S-3, which has been observed only by addition of exogenous reductants into in vitro preparations, is indeed a redox intermediate of the Mn-cluster in the processes of its disintegration and photoactivation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas