- Sustained Circadian Rhythms in Continuous Light in Synechocystis sp. PCC6803 Growing in a Well-Controlled Photobioreactor
- PLoS One
- Volume | Issue number
- 10 | 6
- Number of pages
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
- Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences (SILS)
The cyanobacterial circadian clock has been well-studied and shown to be both robust and a dominant factor in the control of gene expression in Synechococcus elongatus PCC7942. In Synechocystis sp. PCC6803, the circadian clock is assumed to function similarly, yet appears to control transcription to a far lesser extent and its circadian rhythm was reported to not be sustained, or at least rapidly damped, under continuous illumination. One of the feedback loops that governs the clock in S. elongatus in addition to the core oscillator, i.e., the transcriptional-translation regulation loop hinging on KaiC-dependent expression of kaiBC, appears to be missing in Synechocystis, which would account for this difference. Here, we show that the clock in Synechocystis fulfills all criteria of a circadian clock: 1) a free-running period of approximately 24 h, 2) temperature compensation, and 3) being able to be entrained. A remarkably stable rhythm is generated despite the fact that the organism grows with a doubling time of less than 24 h in a photobioreactor run in turbidostat mode. No damping of the free-running circadian oscillation was observed in 2 weeks, suggesting that the clock in individual cells stays synchronized within a culture despite the apparent lack of a transcriptional-translation regulation loop. Furthermore, the dependence of chlorophyll synthesis on the presence of O2 was demonstrated.
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