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Title: A limited role for carbonic anhydrase in C4 photosynthesis as revealed by a ca1ca2 double mutant in maize.

Carbonic anhydrase (CA) catalyzes the first biochemical step of the carbon concentrating mechanism of C4 plants, and in C4 monocots, it has been suggested that CA activity is near limiting for photosynthesis. Here, we test this hypothesis through the characterization of transposon induced mutant alleles of Ca1 and Ca2 in Zea mays. In addition, these two isoforms account for more than 85% of the CA transcript pool. A significant change in isotopic discrimination is observed in mutant plants, which have as little as 3% of wild-type CA activity, but surprisingly, photosynthesis is not reduced under current or elevated pCO2. However, growth and rates of photosynthesis under sub-ambient pCO2 are significantly impaired in the mutants. These findings suggest, that while CA is not limiting for C4 photosynthesis in Z. mays at current pCO2, it likely maintains high rates of photosynthesis when CO2 availability is reduced. Current atmospheric CO2 levels now exceed 400 ppm (~40.53 Pa) and contrast the low CO2 partial pressure (pCO2) conditions under which C4 plants expanded their range ~10 million years ago when the global atmospheric CO2 was below 300 ppm (~30.40 Pa). Thus, as CO2 levels continue to rise, selective pressures for high levels of CA maymore » be limited to arid climates where stomatal closure reduces CO2 availability to the leaf.« less
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [1]
  1. Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, St. Louis, MO (United States)
  2. Washington State Univ., Pullman, WA (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Plant Physiology (Bethesda)
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Plant Physiology (Bethesda); Journal Volume: 165; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 0032-0889
American Society of Plant Biologists
Research Org:
Life Sciences Research Foundation, Baltimore, MD (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Contributing Orgs:
Life Sciences Research Foundation
Country of Publication:
United States