Search tips
Search criteria 


Logo of transbThe Royal Society PublishingPhilosophical Transactions BAboutBrowse By SubjectAlertsFree Trial
Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 2000 October 29; 355(1402): 1465–1475.
PMCID: PMC1692876

Peroxide processing in photosynthesis: antioxidant coupling and redox signalling.


Photosynthesis has a high capacity for production of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), but the intracellular levels of this relatively weak oxidant are controlled by the antioxidant system, comprising a network of enzymatic and non-enzymatic components that notably includes reactions linked to the intracellular ascorbate and glutathione pools. Mutants and transformed plants with specific decreases in key components offer the opp ortunity to dissect the complex system that maintains redox homeostasis. Since H2O2 is a signal-transducing molecule relaying information on intracellular redox state, the pool size must be rigorously controlled within each compartment of the cell. This review focuses on compartment-specific differences in the stringency of redox coupling between ascorbate and glutathione, and the significance this may have for the flexibility of the control of gene expression that is linked to photosynthetic H2O2 production.

Full Text

The Full Text of this article is available as a PDF (297K).

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Baier M, Dietz KJ. The plant 2-Cys peroxiredoxin BAS1 is a nuclear-encoded chloroplast protein: its expressional regulation, phylogenetic origin, and implications for its specific physiological function in plants. Plant J. 1997 Jul;12(1):179–190. [PubMed]
  • Baier M, Dietz KJ. Alkyl hydroperoxide reductases: the way out of the oxidative breakdown of lipids in chloroplasts. Trends Plant Sci. 1999 May;4(5):166–168. [PubMed]
  • Baier M, Dietz KJ. Protective function of chloroplast 2-cysteine peroxiredoxin in photosynthesis. Evidence from transgenic Arabidopsis. Plant Physiol. 1999 Apr;119(4):1407–1414. [PubMed]
  • Bartling D, Radzio R, Steiner U, Weiler EW. A glutathione S-transferase with glutathione-peroxidase activity from Arabidopsis thaliana. Molecular cloning and functional characterization. Eur J Biochem. 1993 Sep 1;216(2):579–586. [PubMed]
  • Bartoli CG, Pastori GM, Foyer CH. Ascorbate biosynthesis in mitochondria is linked to the electron transport chain between complexes III and IV. Plant Physiol. 2000 May;123(1):335–344. [PubMed]
  • Brisson LF, Zelitch I, Havir EA. Manipulation of catalase levels produces altered photosynthesis in transgenic tobacco plants. Plant Physiol. 1998 Jan;116(1):259–269. [PubMed]
  • Bunkelmann JR, Trelease RN. Ascorbate peroxidase. A prominent membrane protein in oilseed glyoxysomes. Plant Physiol. 1996 Feb;110(2):589–598. [PubMed]
  • Conklin PL, Williams EH, Last RL. Environmental stress sensitivity of an ascorbic acid-deficient Arabidopsis mutant. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1996 Sep 3;93(18):9970–9974. [PubMed]
  • Conklin PL, Pallanca JE, Last RL, Smirnoff N. L-ascorbic acid metabolism in the ascorbate-deficient arabidopsis mutant vtc1. Plant Physiol. 1997 Nov;115(3):1277–1285. [PubMed]
  • Conklin PL, Norris SR, Wheeler GL, Williams EH, Smirnoff N, Last RL. Genetic evidence for the role of GDP-mannose in plant ascorbic acid (vitamin C) biosynthesis. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1999 Mar 30;96(7):4198–4203. [PubMed]
  • Dron M, Clouse SD, Dixon RA, Lawton MA, Lamb CJ. Glutathione and fungal elicitor regulation of a plant defense gene promoter in electroporated protoplasts. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1988 Sep;85(18):6738–6742. [PubMed]
  • Foyer CH, Mullineaux PM. The presence of dehydroascorbate and dehydroascorbate reductase in plant tissues. FEBS Lett. 1998 Apr 3;425(3):528–529. [PubMed]
  • Grace SC, Logan BA. Acclimation of Foliar Antioxidant Systems to Growth Irradiance in Three Broad-Leaved Evergreen Species. Plant Physiol. 1996 Dec;112(4):1631–1640. [PubMed]
  • Groden D, Beck E. H2O2 destruction by ascorbate-dependent systems from chloroplasts. Biochim Biophys Acta. 1979 Jun 5;546(3):426–435. [PubMed]
  • Hérouart D, Van Montagu M, Inzé D. Redox-activated expression of the cytosolic copper/zinc superoxide dismutase gene in Nicotiana. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1993 Apr 1;90(7):3108–3112. [PubMed]
  • Hertwig B, Streb P, Feierabend J. Light dependence of catalase synthesis and degradation in leaves and the influence of interfering stress conditions. Plant Physiol. 1992 Nov;100(3):1547–1553. [PubMed]
  • Heupel R, Heldt HW. Protein organization in the matrix of leaf peroxisomes. A multi-enzyme complex involved in photorespiratory metabolism. Eur J Biochem. 1994 Feb 15;220(1):165–172. [PubMed]
  • Jimenez A, Hernandez JA, Del Rio LA, Sevilla F. Evidence for the Presence of the Ascorbate-Glutathione Cycle in Mitochondria and Peroxisomes of Pea Leaves. Plant Physiol. 1997 May;114(1):275–284. [PubMed]
  • Karpinski S, Escobar C, Karpinska B, Creissen G, Mullineaux PM. Photosynthetic electron transport regulates the expression of cytosolic ascorbate peroxidase genes in Arabidopsis during excess light stress. Plant Cell. 1997 Apr;9(4):627–640. [PubMed]
  • Ninomiya Y, Urano Y, Yoshimoto K, Iwahana H, Sasaki S, Arase S, Itakura M. p53 gene mutation analysis in porokeratosis and porokeratosis-associated squamous cell carcinoma. J Dermatol Sci. 1997 Mar;14(3):173–178. [PubMed]
  • Kingston-Smith AH, Foyer CH. Bundle sheath proteins are more sensitive to oxidative damage than those of the mesophyll in maize leaves exposed to paraquat or low temperatures. J Exp Bot. 2000 Jan;51(342):123–130. [PubMed]
  • Levine A, Tenhaken R, Dixon R, Lamb C. H2O2 from the oxidative burst orchestrates the plant hypersensitive disease resistance response. Cell. 1994 Nov 18;79(4):583–593. [PubMed]
  • Meister A. Glutathione-ascorbic acid antioxidant system in animals. J Biol Chem. 1994 Apr 1;269(13):9397–9400. [PubMed]
  • Mittler R, Zilinskas BA. Purification and characterization of pea cytosolic ascorbate peroxidase. Plant Physiol. 1991 Nov;97(3):962–968. [PubMed]
  • Mullineaux PM, Karpinski S, Jiménez A, Cleary SP, Robinson C, Creissen GP. Identification of cDNAS encoding plastid-targeted glutathione peroxidase. Plant J. 1998 Feb;13(3):375–379. [PubMed]
  • Noctor Graham, Foyer Christine H. ASCORBATE AND GLUTATHIONE: Keeping Active Oxygen Under Control. Annu Rev Plant Physiol Plant Mol Biol. 1998 Jun;49(NaN):249–279. [PubMed]
  • Takahashi H, Chen Z, Du H, Liu Y, Klessig DF. Development of necrosis and activation of disease resistance in transgenic tobacco plants with severely reduced catalase levels. Plant J. 1997 May;11(5):993–1005. [PubMed]
  • Trümper S, Follmann H, Häberlein I. A novel-dehydroascorbate reductase from spinach chloroplasts homologous to plant trypsin inhibitor. FEBS Lett. 1994 Sep 26;352(2):159–162. [PubMed]
  • Vanacker H, Carver TL, Foyer CH. Pathogen-induced changes in the antioxidant status of the apoplast in barley leaves . Plant Physiol. 1998 Jul;117(3):1103–1114. [PubMed]
  • Wheeler GL, Jones MA, Smirnoff N. The biosynthetic pathway of vitamin C in higher plants. Nature. 1998 May 28;393(6683):365–369. [PubMed]
  • Willekens H, Chamnongpol S, Davey M, Schraudner M, Langebartels C, Van Montagu M, Inzé D, Van Camp W. Catalase is a sink for H2O2 and is indispensable for stress defence in C3 plants. EMBO J. 1997 Aug 15;16(16):4806–4816. [PubMed]
  • Wingate VP, Lawton MA, Lamb CJ. Glutathione causes a massive and selective induction of plant defense genes. Plant Physiol. 1988 May;87(1):206–210. [PubMed]
  • Winkler BS. Unequivocal evidence in support of the nonenzymatic redox coupling between glutathione/glutathione disulfide and ascorbic acid/dehydroascorbic acid. Biochim Biophys Acta. 1992 Oct 27;1117(3):287–290. [PubMed]
  • Yamaguchi K, Mori H, Nishimura M. A novel isoenzyme of ascorbate peroxidase localized on glyoxysomal and leaf peroxisomal membranes in pumpkin. Plant Cell Physiol. 1995 Sep;36(6):1157–1162. [PubMed]
  • Yoshimura K, Ishikawa T, Nakamura Y, Tamoi M, Takeda T, Tada T, Nishimura K, Shigeoka S. Comparative study on recombinant chloroplastic and cytosolic ascorbate peroxidase isozymes of spinach. Arch Biochem Biophys. 1998 May 1;353(1):55–63. [PubMed]
  • Zhang H, Wang J, Nickel U, Allen RD, Goodman HM. Cloning and expression of an Arabidopsis gene encoding a putative peroxisomal ascorbate peroxidase. Plant Mol Biol. 1997 Aug;34(6):967–971. [PubMed]

Articles from Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences are provided here courtesy of The Royal Society