Hypermodified Fluorescent Chlorophyll Catabolites: Source of Blue Luminescence in Senescent Leaves

Authors

  • Srinivas Banala Dr.,

    1. Institute of Organic Chemistry and Centre of Molecular Biosciences, University of Innsbruck, 6020 Innsbruck (Austria), Fax: (+43) 512-507-2892
    2. Present address: Technical University of Berlin, Department of Chemistry, Organic Chemistry, Straße des 17. Juni 124/TC 2, 10623 Berlin (Germany)
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  • Simone Moser Dr.,

    1. Institute of Organic Chemistry and Centre of Molecular Biosciences, University of Innsbruck, 6020 Innsbruck (Austria), Fax: (+43) 512-507-2892
    2. Present address: Institute of Chemical Sciences and Engineering, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, 1015 Lausanne (Switzerland)
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  • Thomas Müller Dr.,

    1. Institute of Organic Chemistry and Centre of Molecular Biosciences, University of Innsbruck, 6020 Innsbruck (Austria), Fax: (+43) 512-507-2892
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  • Christoph Kreutz Dr.,

    1. Institute of Organic Chemistry and Centre of Molecular Biosciences, University of Innsbruck, 6020 Innsbruck (Austria), Fax: (+43) 512-507-2892
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  • Andreas Holzinger Priv.-Doz. Dr.,

    1. Institute of Botany, Department of Physiology and Cell Physiology of Alpine Plants, University of Innsbruck, 6020 Innsbruck (Austria)
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  • Cornelius Lütz Prof. Dr.,

    1. Institute of Botany, Department of Physiology and Cell Physiology of Alpine Plants, University of Innsbruck, 6020 Innsbruck (Austria)
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  • Bernhard Kräutler Prof. Dr.

    1. Institute of Organic Chemistry and Centre of Molecular Biosciences, University of Innsbruck, 6020 Innsbruck (Austria), Fax: (+43) 512-507-2892
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  • We thank Prof. Stefan Hörtensteiner (University of Zürich) and Prof. Nicholas J. Turro (Columbia University) for helpful discussions. This work was supported by the Austrian National Science Foundation (FWF, Project no. 19596).

Abstract

original image

Yellow leaves of bananas glow blue under UV light. The luminescence is caused by uniquely glycosylated (“hypermodified”) chlorophyll catabolites that accumulate in senescent banana leaves. These findings suggest that (some) chlorophyll catabolites are not mere detoxification products, but are likely to play still unknown physiological roles.

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