Red Light-enhanced Phytochrome Pelletability: Re-examination and Further Characterization 1


Red light-enhanced pelletability of phytochrome was observed in extracts of all 11 plants tested: Avena sativa L., Secale cereale L., Zea mays L., Cucurbita pepo L., Sinapis alba L., Pisum sativum L., Helianthus anuus L., Raphanus sativus L., Glycine max (L.) Merr., Phaseolus vulgaris L., and Lupinus albus L. This enhanced pelletability was observed in all 11 plants following in situ irradiation (in vivo binding) but only in Sinapis and Cucurbita after irradiation of crude extracts (in vitro binding). In vivo binding was not strongly dependent upon pH and, with few exceptions, was not markedly sensitive to high salt concentration, whereas in vitro binding was completely reversed by both high pH and high salt concentration. However, both binding phenomena were observed only with a divalent cation in the extract buffer. In vivo binding was further characterized using Avena which showed an increase in pelletability from less than 10% in dark control extracts to more than 60% in extracts of red light-irradiated shoots. The half-life for binding was 40 seconds at 0.5 C and was strongly temperature-dependent, binding being complete within 5 to 10 sec at 22 C. If pelletable phytochrome in the far red-absorbing form was photoconverted back to the red-absorbing form in situ, phytochrome was released from the pelletable condition with a half-life of 25 minutes at 25 C and 100 minutes at both 13 C and 3 C. No cooperativity in red light-enhanced pelletability with respect to phytochrome-far red-absorbing form was observed.

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