Temperature induced remodeling of the photosynthetic machinery tunes photosynthesis in a thermophyllic red alga

The red alga Cyanidioschyzon merolae is notable for several reasons: it is an early-branching red alga, it has one of the smallest genomes and simplest cellular structures of photosynthetic eukaryotes, and its photosynthetic machinery is intermediate between cyanobacteria and green algae. Furthermore, it thrives at high temperatures. Nikolova et al. examined how acclimation to lower temperatures (25°C versus 42°C) affected C. merolae photosynthetic processes and proteome. After an acclimation period of about ten days, the growth rate of cells growing at a lower temperature roughly matched those growing at the higher temperature. Key findings include the fact that the photosynthetic machinery was extensively remodelled at 25°C, with a reduction in antenna-complex and photosystem proteins, leading to these cells requiring 2.5x more light to reach maximum photosynthetic efficiency. Plant Physiol. 10.​1104/​pp.​17.​00110