Disulphide proteomes and interactions with thioredoxin on the track towards understanding redox regulation in chloroplasts and cyanobacteria

J Proteomics. 2009 Apr 13;72(3):416-38. doi: 10.1016/j.jprot.2009.01.003. Epub 2009 Jan 13.


Light-dependent disulphide/dithiol exchange catalysed by thioredoxin is a classical example of redox regulation of chloroplast enzymes. Recent proteome studies have mapped thioredoxin target proteins in all chloroplast compartments ranging from the envelope to the thylakoid lumen. Progress in the methodologies has made it possible to identify which cysteine residues interact with thioredoxin and to tackle membrane-bound thioredoxin targets. To date, more than hundred targets of thioredoxin and glutaredoxin have been found in plastids from Arabidopsis, spinach, poplar and Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Thioredoxin-mediated redox control appears to be a feature of the central pathways for assimilation and storage of carbon, sulphur and nitrogen, as well as for translation and protein folding. Cyanobacteria are oxygenic photosynthetic prokaryotes, which presumably share a common ancestor with higher plant plastids. As in chloroplasts, cyanobacterial thioredoxins receive electrons from the photosynthetic electron transport, and thioredoxin-targeted proteins are therefore highly interesting in the context of acclimation of these organisms to their environment. Studies of the unicellular model cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803 revealed 77 thioredoxin target proteins. Notably, the functions of all these thioredoxin targets highlight essentially the same processes as those described in chloroplasts suggesting that thioredoxin-mediated redox signalling is equally significant in oxygenic photosynthetic prokaryotes and eukaryotes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Chloroplasts / metabolism*
  • Cyanobacteria / metabolism*
  • Disulfides / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Proteome / metabolism*
  • Thioredoxins / metabolism*


  • Disulfides
  • Proteome
  • Thioredoxins