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Trends Plant Sci. 2006 Nov;11(11):543-9. Epub 2006 Oct 6.

Photosynthesis as a power supply for (bio-)hydrogen production.

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Lehrstuhl für Biochemie der Pflanzen, Fakultät für Biologie, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, D-44780 Bochum, Germany.


Although hydrogen is considered to be one of the most promising future energy sources and the technical aspects involved in using it have advanced considerably, the future supply of hydrogen from renewable sources is still unsolved. This review focuses on the production of hydrogen from water using biological catalysts that have been optimized by nature: the process of water-splitting photosynthesis on the one hand and hydrogen production via the catalyst hydrogenase on the other. Using water as a source of electrons and sunlight as a source of energy, both engineered natural systems and biomimetic (bio-inspired) model systems can be designed as first steps towards water-splitting-based hydrogen production (biophotolytic hydrogen production).

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