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Diurnal changes in photochemical efficiency and xanthophyll concentrations in shallow water reef corals: Evidence for photoinhibition and photoprotection

Lookup NU author(s): Emeritus Professor Barbara Brown, Richard Dunne


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Diurnal patterns of photoinhibition have been identified in seven species of shallow water reef corals from the Andaman Sea, off the west coast of Thailand, using pulse amplitude fluorometry. Photochemical efficiency (F(v)/F(m)) and quantum yield (ΔF/F(m)) of symbiotic dinoflagellates within the corals declined after dawn to reach a minimum between midday and early afternoon, recovering to former dawn levels by early evening. Parallel studies on the xanthophylls diadinoxanthin (Dn) and diatoxanthin (Dt), and their inter-conversion, also revealed a strong diurnal pattern as well as inverse correlations between the xanthophyll ratio Dt/(Dn + Dt) and F(v)/F(m) and ΔF/F(m). These findings suggest a photoprotective function for these pigments.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Brown BE, Ambarsari I, Warner ME, Fitt WK, Dunne RP, Gibb SW, Cummings DG

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Coral Reefs

Year: 1999

Volume: 18

Issue: 2

Pages: 99-105

Print publication date: 01/07/1999

ISSN (print): 0722-4028

ISSN (electronic): 1432-0975

Publisher: Springer


DOI: 10.1007/s003380050163


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