In plants, hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)) plays a major signaling role in triggering both a defense response and cell death. Increased cellular H(2)O(2) levels and subsequent redox imbalances are managed at the production and scavenging levels. Because catalases are the major H(2)O(2) scavengers that remove the bulk of cellular H(2)O(2), altering their levels allows in planta modulation of H(2)O(2) concentrations. Reduced peroxisomal catalase activity increased sensitivity toward both ozone and photorespiratory H(2)O(2)-induced cell death in transgenic catalase-deficient Arabidopsis thaliana. These plants were used as a model system to build a comprehensive inventory of transcriptomic variations, which were triggered by photorespiratory H(2)O(2) induced by high-light (HL) irradiance. In addition to an H(2)O(2)-dependent and -independent type of transcriptional response during light stress, microarray analysis on both control and transgenic catalase-deficient plants, exposed to 0, 3, 8, and 23 h of HL, revealed several specific regulatory patterns of gene expression. Thus, photorespiratory H(2)O(2) has a direct impact on transcriptional programs in plants.