Arabidopsis cytosolic alpha-glycan phosphorylase, PHS2, is important during carbohydrate imbalanced conditions.

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Arabidopsis thaliana has two isoforms of alpha-glycan phosphorylase (EC, one residing in the plastid and the other in the cytosol. The cytosolic phosphorylase, PHS2, acts on soluble heteroglycans that constitute a part of the carbohydrate pool in a plant. This study aimed to define a physiological role for PHS2. Under standard growth conditions phs2 knock-out mutants do not show any clear growth phenotype, and we hypothesised that during low-light conditions where carbohydrate imbalance is perturbed, this enzyme is important. Soil-grown phs2 mutant plants developed leaf lesions when placed in very low light. Analysis of soluble heteroglycan (SHG) levels showed that the amount of glucose residues in SHG was higher in the phs2 mutant compared to wild-type plants. Furthermore, a standard senescence assay from soil-grown phs2 mutant plants showed that leaves senesced significantly faster in darkness than the wild-type leaves. We also found decreased hypocotyl extension in in vitro-grown phs2 mutant seedlings when grown for long time in darkness at 6 °C. We conclude that PHS2 activity is important in the adult stage during low-light conditions and senescence, as well as during prolonged seedling development when carbohydrate levels are unbalanced.


  • Simone Schopper
  • P Mühlenbock
  • Carolin Sörensson
  • Linda Hellborg
  • M Lenman
  • Susanne Widell
  • J Fettke
  • E Andreasson
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Biological Sciences
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)74-80
JournalPlant Biology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Publication categoryResearch