Gain a greater understanding of the interactions between mitochondrial respiration and photosynthesis using targeted Arabidopsis respiration mutants.
There are two major energy producing organelles within the plant, chloroplasts and mitochondria. In general, the chloroplasts are responsible for producing sugars using light energy, while mitochondria use these compounds to make ATP and synthesise various cellular compounds. In leaves, these two organelles operate simultaneously in the light and there is evidence that there is a flow of energy and metabolites between them to satisfy various cellular functions, including aspects of photorespiration and exchange of reducing energy.
Using a number of Arabidopsis respiration mutants (currently available within the ARC Centre of Excellence in Plant Energy Biology), examine the effects these have on photosynthetic function. The mutations are in various component Complex 1 and Complex 2 and the alternative oxidase. Approaches would include aspects of plant growth, leaf metabolism and physiology, effects on metabolic pathways (metabolomics), effects on transcription (transcriptomics) and leaf development.