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Biochim Biophys Acta. 2001 Oct 30;1507(1-3):115-38.

Modification of photosystem I reaction center by the extraction and exchange of chlorophylls and quinones.

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  • 1Laboratory of Photobioenergetics, Graduate School of Science, Nagoya University, Japan.


The photosystem (PS) I photosynthetic reaction center was modified thorough the selective extraction and exchange of chlorophylls and quinones. Extraction of lyophilized photosystem I complex with diethyl ether depleted more than 90% chlorophyll (Chl) molecules bound to the complex, preserving the photochemical electron transfer activity from the primary electron donor P700 to the acceptor chlorophyll A(0). The treatment extracted all the carotenoids and the secondary acceptor phylloquinone (A(1)), and produced a PS I reaction center that contains nine molecules of Chls including P700 and A(0), and three Fe-S clusters (F(X), F(A) and F(B)). The ether-extracted PS I complex showed fast electron transfer from P700 to A(0) as it is, and to FeS clusters if phylloquinone or an appropriate artificial quinone was reconstituted as A(1). The ether-extracted PS I enabled accurate detection of the primary photoreactions with little disturbance from the absorbance changes of the bulk pigments. The quinone reconstitution created the new reactions between the artificial cofactors and the intrinsic components with altered energy gaps. We review the studies done in the ether-extracted PS I complex including chlorophyll forms of the core moiety of PS I, fluorescence of P700, reaction rate between A(0) and reconstituted A(1), and the fast electron transfer from P700 to A(0). Natural exchange of chlorophyll a to 710-740 nm absorbing chlorophyll d in PS I of the newly found cyanobacteria-like organism Acaryochloris marina was also reviewed. Based on the results of exchange studies in different systems, designs of photosynthetic reaction centers are discussed.

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