Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Plants coordinate the expression of photosynthesis-related genes in response to growth and environmental changes. In species that conduct two-cell C4 photosynthesis, expression of photosynthesis genes is partitioned such that leaf mesophyll and bundle sheath cells accumulate different components of the photosynthetic pathway. The identities of the regulatory networks that facilitate this partitioning are unknown. Here we show that differences in light perception between mesophyll and bundle sheath cells facilitate differential regulation and accumulation of photosynthesis gene transcripts in the C4 crop maize (Zea mays). Key components of the photosynthesis gene regulatory network differentially accumulated between mesophyll and bundle sheath cells, indicative of differential network activity across cell types. We further show that blue light (but not red) is necessary and sufficient to activate Photosystem II assembly in mesophyll cells in etiolated maize. Finally, we demonstrate that 61% of all light-induced mesophyll and bundle sheath genes were induced only by blue light or only by red light but not both. These findings provide evidence that subdivision of light signalling networks is a component of cellular partitioning of C4 photosynthesis in maize.

Original publication




Journal article


Plant Physiol

Publication Date