A temporal study was conducted to evaluate the dynamic complementary chromatic adaptation (CCA) response of two Fremyella diplosiphon strains-wild-type pigmentation strain SF33 and an RcaE-deficient (ΔrcaE) strain, which lacks the photosensor that regulates CCA. SF33 and ΔrcaE cultures were monitored for 15 days after transition of green-light (GL) acclimated cultures to red light (RL) and vice versa. SF33 showed similar growth irrespective of the external light quality; however, a ΔrcaE strain grew slower than SF33 under both RL and GL. Chlorophyll a (chla) content increased in both strains over time and was not much different under RL and GL indicating that chla biosynthesis is not affected significantly by light quality or RcaE function. Phycoerythrin is the sole pigment to absorb GL, whereas several pigments, i.e., allophycocyanin, phycocyanin and chla, function under RL to drive photosynthesis. SF33 compensates for this by synthesizing a higher percentage of PE under GL. The final pigment distribution in the ΔrcaE mutant was found to be more different from SF33 under GL than under RL indicating that RcaE is needed for a transitional response to RL and RL-dependent repression of PE accumulation, yet RcaE is virtually critical for both transitioning to and a full adaptation to GL.
Keywords: cyanobacteria; light; photomorphogenesis; photoreceptor; signaling.