Biology Department Seminar

"Guiding Improvements of Photosynthesis Using an Integrated Dynamic Model of Photosynthetic Carbon Metabolism"

Presented by Xinguang Zhu, Department of Plant Biology, School of Integrative Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Friday, January 25, 2008, 11:00 am — John Dunn Seminar Room, Bldg. 463

The distribution of nitrogen between enzymes of photosynthetic carbon metabolism might be assumed to have been optimized by natural selection. However, natural selection for survival and fecundity does not necessarily select for maximal photosynthetic productivity. Further atmospheric CO2 concentration, the key substrate, has changed more over the past 100 years than the past 25M years with the likelihood that natural selection has had inadequate time to re-optimize resource partitioning for this change. Could photosynthetic rate be increased by altered partitioning of resource among the enzymes of carbon metabolism? To address this question, we developed a complete dynamic model of photosynthetic carbon metabolism and used an “evolutionary” algorithm to progressively search for multiple alterations in partitioning that increase photosynthetic rate. Our results suggest that manipulation of partitioning could greatly increase carbon gain without any increase in the total protein-nitrogen investment in the apparatus for photosynthetic carbon metabolism.

Hosted by: Jorg Schwender

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