Isolation and characterization of novel Chlamydomonas mutants that display phototaxis but not photophobic response

A. Matsuda, Kenjiro Yoshimura, O. A. Sineshchekov, M. Hirono, R. Kamiya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

25 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The unicellular green alga Chlamydomonas displays two distinct kinds of behavioral response to light: phototaxis, in which cells swim toward or away from the light source under constant illumination; and photophobic responses (also called stop responses or photoshock responses), in which cells transiently convert their flagellar waveform and swim backward upon sudden increase in light intensity. It has been suggested that the two responses partly share a common signal transduction pathway, but exactly how the different responses are produced has not been established. In this study, to help understand the molecular and cellular mechanisms that bring about the photophobic response, we isolated novel mutants (ppr1, ppr2, ppr3, and ppr4) that do not show the photophobic response. Importantly, these mutants retain the ability to display phototaxis, with almost the same sensitivities as in the wild type cell. Demembranated and reactivated flagellar axonemes of the ppr mutants were found to convert the bending patterns depending on the Ca2+ concentration, indicating that the axonemal mechanism for waveform conversion required for the photophobic response was unaffected by the mutations. In addition, measurements of electric currents in cell suspensions showed that these mutants generate normal photoreceptor currents (PRC) upon photostimulation, suggesting that they retain the normal activity of photoreception and the ionic channels that produce PRCs. However, the all- or-none flagellar current (FC), a Ca2+ current generated by PRC-induced depolarization of flagellar membrane, was absent or seriously impaired in the mutants. These findings clearly indicate that the all-or-none FC is necessary for the photophobic response but not for phototaxis. The isolation of the four genetically independent ppr mutants suggests that the generation of the FC is based on multiple components that are not used in the mechanism for phototaxis, and implies that the Chlamydomonas flagellar membrane possesses a voltage-dependent Ca2+-channel specifically used for generation of photophobic responses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)353-362
Number of pages10
JournalCell Motility and the Cytoskeleton
Volume41
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Novel mutants
  • Photoresponse
  • Phototaxis
  • ppr mutants

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology

Cite this

Isolation and characterization of novel Chlamydomonas mutants that display phototaxis but not photophobic response. / Matsuda, A.; Yoshimura, Kenjiro; Sineshchekov, O. A.; Hirono, M.; Kamiya, R.

In: Cell Motility and the Cytoskeleton, Vol. 41, No. 4, 1998, p. 353-362.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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