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Photorespiration. Photorespiration occurs when the CO2 levels inside a leaf become low. This happens on hot dry days On hot dry days the plant is forced.

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Presentation on theme: "Photorespiration. Photorespiration occurs when the CO2 levels inside a leaf become low. This happens on hot dry days On hot dry days the plant is forced."— Presentation transcript:

1 Photorespiration

2 Photorespiration occurs when the CO2 levels inside a leaf become low. This happens on hot dry days On hot dry days the plant is forced to close its stomata to prevent excess water loss. The plant continues fix CO2 when its stomata are closed, the CO2 will get used up and the O2 ratio in the leaf will increase relative to CO2 concentrations.

3 When the CO2 levels inside the leaf drop to around 50 ppm, Rubisco starts to combine O2 with RuBP instead of CO2 The net result of this is that instead of producing 2 3C PGA molecules, only one molecule of PGA is produced and a toxic 2C molecule called phosphoglycolateis produced.


5 phosphoglycolate The plant must get rid of the phosphoglycolate since it is highly toxic. It converts the molecule to glycolic acid. The glycolic acid is then transported to the peroxisome and there converted to glycine.

6 phosphoglycolate Glycolic acid Glycine In peroxisome s Serine In mitochondri a

7 The serine is then used to make other organic molecules. All these conversions cost the plant energy and results in the net loss of CO2 from the plant To prevent this process, two specialized biochemical additions have been evolved in the plant world: C4 and CAM metabolism.

8 The C 4 Pathway


10 The C 4 pathway is designed to efficiently fix CO 2 at low concentrations and plants that use this pathway are known as C 4 plants. These plants fix CO 2 into a four carbon compound (C 4 ) called oxaloacetate. This occurs in cells called mesophyll cells.

11 1. CO 2 is fixed to a three-carbon compound called phosphoenolpyruvate to produce the four- carbon compound oxaloacetate. The enzyme catalyzing this reaction, PEP carboxylase, fixes CO 2 very efficiently so the C 4 plants don't need to to have their stomata open as much. The oxaloacetate is then converted to another four-carbon compound called malate in a step requiring the reducing power of NADPH

12 2. The malate then exits the mesophyll cells and enters the chloroplasts of specialized cells called bundle sheath cells. Here the four-carbon malate is decarboxylated to produce CO 2, a three-carbon compound called pyruvate, and NADPH. The CO 2 combines with ribulose bisphosphate and goes through the Calvin cycle.

13 3.The pyruvate re-enters the mesophyll cells, reacts with ATP, and is converted back to phosphoenolpyruvate, the starting compound of the C 4 cycle.

14 The CAM pathway

15 CAM plants live in very dry condition and, unlike other plants, open their stomata to fix CO 2 only at night. Like C 4 plants, the use PEP carboxylase to fix CO 2, forming oxaloacetate. The oxaloacetate is converted to malate which is stored in cell vacuoles. During the day when the stomata are closed, CO 2 is removed from the stored malate and enters the Calvin cycle


17 C3 C4 Temp C Absence of malate One carboxylation reaction CO2 is the substrate Usual leaf structures Temp C Presence of malate 2 carboxylation reactions HCO3 is the substrate Closed stomata to reduce water loss and concentrating CO2 in the bundle sheet cells Additional ATP is required Differences between calvin (C3) and C4


19 Comparison between C3, C4, and CAM C3C4CAM productG3P Day &night Malate Day &night Malate Night only AnatomyNo bundle sheet cell Bundle sheet cell No bundle sheet cell No of stomata Photorespirati on Up to 40% Not detectable SpeciesWheat, rice, potato Sugar canePineapple, vanilla, cacti

20 Factors affecting photorespiration O2: CO2Ratio If Cells Have Low O2 but Higher CO2, Normal photosynthesis i.e. Calvin Cycle Dominates C4Plants Have Little Photorespiration because They Carry the CO2to the bundle Sheath Cells and can Build up High [CO2]

21 Temperature Photorespiration Increases with Temperature Calvin Cycle Reactions always Favored over Photorespiration If Cells Have Higher O2and Lower CO2, Photorespiration Dominates

22 Regulation of Carbon Dioxide Fixation Plant cells have chloroplasts that carry out photosynthesis: CO2 glucose Plant cells also have mitochondria and carry out glycolysis, TCA, and oxidative phosphorylation: Glucose CO2 To prevent futile cycling of carbohydrate, cells must regulate the activities of key Calvin cycle enzymes.

23 These enzymes respond indirectly to light activation. light energy is available the Calvin cycle proceeds. If no light available, no fixation of CO2occur Among the key changes that regulate Calvin cycle versus respiration are:Environment Factors: Light intensity, temperature, & availability of H2O, CO2, O2 Cellular factors: cell state of key metabolites (NADPH, ATP, inhibitors, reducing power, etc )

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