The Effect of PH on the Rate of Photosynthesis

Photosynthesis is the creation of food in green plants.
••• Image by, courtesy of ???

Photosynthesis, the process by which plants create their food, can be affected by changes in pH within the leaves. PH is the measure of the acidity of a solution, and it can have a large effect on many biological processes.

The PH Scale

The pH scale ranges from 0 to 14, with 7 being neutral. Measurements below 7 indicate acidity, and measurements above 7 indicate that a solution is alkaline, or basic.

PH and Biological Processes

Changes in pH affect all biological processes, primarily through its influence on enzymes. Enzymes are important \"workers\" inside cells that are disabled by extremes in pH.

The Optimum PH for Photosynthetic Enzymes

RuBisCO is the key carbon-fixing enzyme in the process of photosynthesis, and it functions optimally at a pH of 8.

The Effect of Raising or Lowering the PH

Raising or lowering the pH from 8 will negatively influence the rate of photosynthesis because RuBisCO will begin to work more slowly. When the pH reaches 6 on the low side and 10 on the high side, RuBisCO will cease working altogether.

Other Considerations

Besides RuBisCO, there are many enzymes and proteins involved in the photosynthetic process; all of them are negatively affected by the raising or lowering of pH from the optimal level.

Related Articles

Herbicide Effects on Photosynthesis
The Effect of Temperature on the Rate of Photosynthesis
What Is the Optimum pH for Human Stomach Enzyme Activity?
What Is the Goal of Homeostasis?
What Is the Role of Pigments in Photosynthesis?
Organelles Involved in Photosynthesis
Role of Coenzymes
What Are the Functions of Photosynthesis?
How Does Pollution Affect Photosynthesis?
Where Does Plant Respiration Take Place?
What Is the Sun's Role in Photosynthesis?
Why Can the Surface of the Plasma Membrane Be Described...
Why Do Water Plants Have Stomata on Upper Part of Their...
What Type of Molecule Prevents Extensive Changes in...
How Do Stomata Work in Photosynthesis?
Leaf Cell Structure
Two Environmental Factors That Affect Transpiration
How Are Photosynthesis & Cellular Respiration Related?
How Does pH Level Affect Enzyme Activity?
Characteristics of Vascular Plants