Biphasic fluence-response curves and derived action spectra for light-induced absorbance changes in Phycomyces mycelium

Chafia H. Trad, Edward D. Lipson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


The photoresponses of Phycomyces, including phototropism and photocontrol of sporangiophore development, are mediated primarily by blue and UV light. Recent results on these two responses indicated a subsidiary role for green light. We have measured in vivo light-induced absorbance changes (LIAC) in mycelial samples of a caroteneless (carB) strain to compare the effectiveness of UV, blue, and green light. In the dual-wavelength kinetic mode of the spectrophotometer, measuring wavelengths of 445 and 470 nm were chosen, because green light produces substantial absorbance changes between these two wavelengths. Fluence-response curves were measured for 13 wavelengths between 365 and 530 nm, and for variable exposure times between 0.5 and 320 s. With one exception (365 nm), the curves were biphasic. The low fluence component was generally sigmoidal with an abrupt rise. The high fluence component failed to reach saturation for the fluences tested (less than 70 μmol m-2 s-1). Using the inferred threshold fluences of these two components as criterion effects, we obtained two action spectra. For the low fluence component, the action spectrum showed major peaks at 394, 450, and 530 nm and a minor peak at 416 nm. The high fluence component action spectrum showed very little sensitivity in the blue region. The major sensitivity was in the near UV, and a relatively small peak appeared in the green part of the spectrum at 507 nm. The biphasic character of the fluence-response curves suggests that two photosystems are responsible for the absorbance changes. The low fluence photosystem is sensitive mainly to blue and UV light and may thus represent a physiological blue-light photoreceptor. The high fluence photosystem is clearly not of this type. It (and perhaps the low fluence system as well) may mediate some of the subsidiary physiological effects of green light.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)169-180
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Photochemistry and Photobiology, B: Biology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1987


  • Blue-light photoreceptors
  • Phycomyces.
  • action spectroscopy
  • light-induced absorbance changes
  • phototropism
  • spectrophotometry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiation
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Biophysics
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


Dive into the research topics of 'Biphasic fluence-response curves and derived action spectra for light-induced absorbance changes in Phycomyces mycelium'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this