Photosynthesis in Arabidopsis thaliana mutants with reduced chloroplast number

Jotham Austin, Andrew Webber

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


We have used a class of Arabidopsis mutants altered in the accumulation and replication of chloroplasts (arc mutants) to investigate the effect of reduced chloroplast number on the photosynthetic competence of leaves. Each of the arc mutants examined (arc3, arc5, and arc6) accumulate only a few (2-15) large chloroplasts per mesophyll cell [K.A. Pyke and R.M. Leech (1992) Plant Physiology 99: 1005-1008]. The increased plastid size maintains a constant plastid to mesophyll cell volume, which has been suggested to compensate for the lower chloroplast number. In fact, we find that reduced chloroplast number has an effect on both the composition and structure of the photosynthetic apparatus, and that each arc mutant has an altered photosynthetic capacity, and we conclude that photosynthetic competence is dependent on proper chloroplast division and development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)373-384
Number of pages12
JournalPhotosynthesis research
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2005


  • Arabidopsis
  • Arc mutants
  • Chloroplast division
  • Chloroplast movement
  • Photosynthetic competence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Plant Science
  • Cell Biology


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