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The Role of Acidic Residues in the C Terminal Tail of the LHCSR3 Protein of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii in Non-Photochemical Quenching

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journal contribution
posted on 19.07.2021, 20:29 by Franco V. A. Camargo, Federico Perozeni, Gabriel de la Cruz Valbuena, Luca Zuliani, Samim Sardar, Giulio Cerullo, Cosimo D’Andrea, Matteo Ballottari
Light-harvesting complex stress-related (LHCSR) proteins in green algae are essential for photoprotection via a non-photochemical quenching (NPQ), playing the dual roles of pH sensing and dissipation of chlorophylls excited-state energy. pH sensing occurs via a protonation of acidic residues located mainly on its lumen-exposed C-terminus. Here, we combine in vivo and in vitro studies to ascertain the role in NPQ of these protonatable C-terminal residues in LHCSR3 from Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. In vivo studies show that four of the residues, D239, D240, E242, and D244, are not involved in NPQ. In vitro experiments on an LHCSR3 chimeric protein, obtained by a substitution of the C terminal with that of another LHC protein lacking acidic residues, show a reduction of NPQ compared to the wild type but preserve the quenching mechanism involving a charge transfer from carotenoids to chlorophylls. NPQ in LHCSR3 is thus a complex mechanism, composed of multiple contributions triggered by different acidic residues.