Photoheterotrophic growth of Physcomitrella patens

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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013. Physcomitrella patens is a model bryophyte representing an early land plant in the green plant lineage. This organism possesses many advantages as a model organism. Its genome has been sequenced, its predominant life cycle stage is the haploid gametophyte, it is readily transformable and it can integrate transformed DNA into its genome by homologous recombination. One limitation for the use of P. patens in photosynthesis research is its reported inability to grow photoheterotrophically, in the presence of sucrose and the Photosystem II inhibitor 3-(3,4-dichlorophenyl)-1,1-dimethylurea, which prevents linear photosynthetic electron transport. In this communication we describe the facile isolation of a P. patens strain which can grow photoheterotrophically. Additionally, we have examined a number of photosynthetic parameters for this strain grown under photoautotrophic, mixotrophic (in the presence of sucrose) and photoheterotrophic conditions, as well as the 3-(3,4-dichlorophenyl)-1,1-dimethylurea-inhibited state. The ability to grow P. patens photoheterotrophically should significantly facilitate its use in photosynthetic studies.

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