Biochemical Characterization of Chlorophyll-free Mitochondria from Pea Leaves

David A Day, Michel Neuburger, Roland Douce

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Mitochondria from pea leaves were purified by centrifugation on a self-generated Percoll gradient which contained a linear gradient of polyvinylpyrrolidone-25 (0-10010, w/v). The chlorophyll content of the
purified mitochondria was less than 1 pg per mg protein. All substrates were rapidly oxidized by these mitochondria, the rate of glycine oxidation being between 200 and 300 nmol 0, min-' mg-I protein, depending on the age of the leaves used. These rates did not vary significantly over a period of 20 h, provided NAD+ was supplied exogenously, when the mitochondria were stored on ice. Respiratory control, ADP/O ratios and outer membrane integrity (always more than 95010) were also maintained during storage. The phospholipid composition of the membranes from the leaf mitochondria was virtually identical to that of mitochondria from non-photosynthetic tissues although their lipid to
protein ratio was slightly lower. The polypeptide pattern of the membranes from green leaf mitochondria and those from etiolated leaves and hypocotyls were also similar, but marked differences were observed between the matrix proteins from the different tissues. In particular, intensely stained bands at 94, 51,41 and 15.5 kDa which were present in the matrix of green leaf mitochondria were
missing or present in much smaller quantities in the non-photosynthetic tissues. This difference was correlated with the ability of the mitochondria to oxidize glycine, suggesting that the four polypeptides may be associated with the glycine decarboxylase complex.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)219-228
Number of pages10
JournalAustralian Journal of Plant Physiology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1985
Externally publishedYes


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