Mechanisms controlling metabolite concentrations of the Calvin Benson Cycle

Xin Guang Zhu*, Haim Treves, Honglong Zhao

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Maintaining proper metabolite levels in a complex metabolic network is crucial for maintaining a high flux through the network. In this paper, we discuss major regulatory mechanisms over the Calvin Benson Cycle (CBC) with regard to their roles in conferring homeostasis of metabolite levels in CBC. These include: 1) Redox regulation of enzymes in the CBC on one hand ensures that metabolite levels stay above certain lower bounds under low light while on the other hand increases the flux through the CBC under high light. 2) Metabolite regulations, especially allosteric regulations of major regulatory enzymes, ensure the rapid up-regulation of fluxes to ensure sufficient amount of triose phosphate is available for end product synthesis and concurrently avoid phosphate limitation. 3) A balanced activities of enzymes in the CBC help maintain balanced flux through CBC; some innate product feedback mechanisms, in particular the ADP feedback regulation of GAPDH and F6P feedback regulation of FBPase, exist in CBC to achieve such a balanced enzyme activities and hence flux distribution in the CBC for greater photosynthetic efficiency. Transcriptional regulation and natural variations of enzymes controlling CBC metabolite homeostasis should be further explored to maximize the potential of engineering CBC for greater efficiency.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-9
Number of pages7
JournalSeminars in Cell and Developmental Biology
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2024


FundersFunder number
National Research and Development Program of Ministry of Science and Technology of China2018YFA0900600, 2020YFA0907600, 2019YFA0904600
National Natural Science Foundation of China31870214
Chinese Academy of SciencesXDB27020105, XDB37020104


    • Allosteric regulation
    • Balanced investment
    • Calvin Benson Cycle
    • Efficiency
    • Feedback inhibition
    • Metabolic homeostasis


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