The photoprotective function of the ketocarotenoid astaxanthin in Haematococcus was questioned. When exposed to high irradiance and/or nutritional stress, green Haematococcus cells turned red due to accumulation of an immense quantity of the red pigment astaxanthin. Our results demonstrate that: 1) The addition of diphenylamine, an inhibitor of astaxanthin biosynthesis, causes cell death under high light intensity: 2) Red cells are susceptible to high light stress to the same extent or even higher then green ones upon exposure to a very high light intensity (4000 μmol photon m-2 s-1); 3) Addition of 1O2 generators (methylene blue, rose bengal) under noninductive conditions (low light of 100 μmol photon m-2 s-1) induced astaxanthin accumulation. This can be reversed by an exogenous 1O2 quencher (histidine): 4) Histidine can prevent the accumulation of astaxanthin induced by phosphate starvation. We suggest that: 1) Astaxanthin is the result of the photoprotection process rather than the protective agent: 2) 1O2 is involved indirectly in astaxanthin accumulation process.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Zeitschrift fur Naturforschung - Section C Journal of Biosciences|
|State||Published - 1 Jan 1998|
- High light
- Reactive oxygen species (ROS)
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology (all)