Dinitrogen-fixing endogenous rhythm in Synechococcus RF-1

N. Grobbelaar, T. C. Huang, H. Y. Lin, T. J. Chow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

148 Citations (Scopus)


Under continuous illumination this unicellular aerobic cyanobacterium fixes dinitrogen continuously at a variable and usually low rate. Exposure of the culture to diurnal light/dark cycles invariably results in the virtual restriction of nitrogenase activity to the dark periods. The rhythmic diurnal dinitrogen fixation pattern becomes a truely endogenous cycle which persists for at least 4 days with decreasing magnitude on exposing the culture to continuous illumination. The free running time of the rhythm appears to decrease from an initial 26 h to 22 h in the course of 4 days. This appears to be the first record of an endogenous rhythm in a prokaryote.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)173-177
Number of pages5
JournalFEMS Microbiology Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 1986
Externally publishedYes


  • endogenous rhythm
  • nitrogenase
  • Synechococcus sp.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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