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Sample records for membrane protein light-harvesting

  1. Separation and identification of the light harvesting proteins contained in grana and stroma thylakoid membrane fractions.

    PubMed

    Timperio, Anna Maria; Huber, Christian G; Zolla, Lello

    2004-06-18

    This paper presents the results of a study performed to develop a rapid and straightforward method to resolve and simultaneously identify the light-harvesting proteins of photosystem I (LHCI) and photosystem II (LHCII) present in the grana and stroma of the thylakoid membranes of higher plants. These hydrophobic proteins are embedded in the phospholipid membrane, and their extraction usually requires detergent and time consuming manipulations that may introduce artifacts. The method presented here makes use of digitonin, a detergent which causes rapid (within less than 3 min) cleavage of the thylakoid membrane into two subfractions: appressed (grana) and non-appressed (stroma) membranes, the former enriched in photosystem II and the latter containing mainly photosystem I. From these two fractions identification of the protein components was performed by separating them by reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC) and determining the intact molecular mass by electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS). By this strategy the ion suppression during ESI-MS that normally occurs in the presence of membrane phospholipids was avoided, since RP-HPLC removed most phospholipids from the analytes. Consequently, high quality mass spectra were extracted from the reconstructed ion chromatograms. The specific cleavage of thylakoid membranes by digitonin, as well as the rapid identification and quantification of the antenna composition of the two complexes facilitate future studies of the lateral migration of the chlorophyll-protein complexes along thylakoid membranes, which is well known to be induced by high intensity light or other environmental stresses. Such investigations could not be performed by sodium dodecylsulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis because of insufficient resolution of the proteins having molecular masses between 22,000 and 25,000. PMID:15248427

  2. Biogenesis of light harvesting proteins.

    PubMed

    Dall'Osto, Luca; Bressan, Mauro; Bassi, Roberto

    2015-09-01

    The LHC family includes nuclear-encoded, integral thylakoid membrane proteins, most of which coordinate chlorophyll and xanthophyll chromophores. By assembling with the core complexes of both photosystems, LHCs form a flexible peripheral moiety for enhancing light-harvesting cross-section, regulating its efficiency and providing protection against photo-oxidative stress. Upon its first appearance, LHC proteins underwent evolutionary diversification into a large protein family with a complex genetic redundancy. Such differentiation appears as a crucial event in the adaptation of photosynthetic organisms to changing environmental conditions and land colonization. The structure of photosystems, including nuclear- and chloroplast-encoded subunits, presented the cell with a number of challenges for the control of the light harvesting function. Indeed, LHC-encoding messages are translated in the cytosol, and pre-proteins imported into the chloroplast, processed to their mature size and targeted to the thylakoids where are assembled with chromophores. Thus, a tight coordination between nuclear and plastid gene expression, in response to environmental stimuli, is required to adjust LHC composition during photoacclimation. In recent years, remarkable progress has been achieved in elucidating structure, function and regulatory pathways involving LHCs; however, a number of molecular details still await elucidation. In this review, we will provide an overview on the current knowledge on LHC biogenesis, ranging from organization of pigment-protein complexes to the modulation of gene expression, import and targeting to the photosynthetic membranes, and regulation of LHC assembly and turnover. Genes controlling these events are potential candidate for biotechnological applications aimed at optimizing light use efficiency of photosynthetic organisms. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Chloroplast biogenesis. PMID:25687893

  3. Refolding of the integral membrane protein light-harvesting complex II monitored by pulse EPR.

    PubMed

    Dockter, Christoph; Volkov, Aleksei; Bauer, Christian; Polyhach, Yevhen; Joly-Lopez, Zoé; Jeschke, Gunnar; Paulsen, Harald

    2009-11-01

    The major light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b complex (LHCII) of the photosynthetic apparatus in plants self-organizes in vitro. The recombinant apoprotein, denatured in dodecyl sulfate, spontaneously folds when it is mixed with its pigments, chlorophylls, and carotenoids in detergent solution, and assembles into structurally authentic LHCII in the course of several minutes. Pulse EPR techniques, specifically double-electron-electron resonance (DEER), have been used to analyze protein folding during this process. Pairs of nitroxide labels were introduced site-specifically into recombinant LHCII and shown not to affect the stability and function of the pigment-protein complex. Interspin distance distributions between two spin pairs were measured at various time points, one pair located on either end of the second transmembrane helix (helix 3), the other one located near the luminal ends of the intertwined transmembrane helices 1 and 4. In the dodecyl sulfate-solubilized apoprotein, both distance distributions were consistent with a random-coil protein structure. A rapid freeze-quench experiment on the latter spin pair indicated that 1 s after initiating reconstitution the protein structure is virtually unchanged. Subsequently, both distance distributions monitored protein folding in the same time range in which the assembly of chlorophylls into the complex had been observed. The positioning of the spin pair spanning the hydrophobic core of LHCII clearly preceded the juxtaposition of the spin pair on the luminal side of the complex. This indicates that superhelix formation of helices 1 and 4 is a late step in LHCII assembly. PMID:19833872

  4. Dissociation of the light-harvesting membrane protein complex I from Rhodobacter sphaeroides under high hydrostatic pressure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Puusepp, Marit; Kangur, Liina; Freiberg, Arvi

    2015-04-01

    The light-harvesting complex 1 (LH1) from Rhodobacter sphaeroides is an excellent model system for investigating the stability of oligomeric membrane proteins under high hydrostatic pressure. The currently investigated LH1 forms a 16-meric ring structure of B825 subunits. B825 is a heterodimer of transmembrane α- and β-polypeptide chains, which non-covalently binds two bacteriochlorophyll a molecules. These pigment molecules were used as intrinsic spectroscopic sensors to follow the dissociation reaction. Our results demonstrate that the LH1 dissociates into B825 subunits through an intermediary tetrameric unit B845. The dissociation mechanism depends on pressure. At ∼200-500 MPa the dissociation corresponds to a pseudo-first-order reaction, characterised by the apparent reaction rate at atmospheric pressure k0 = 3.10-5 s-1, activation volume ΔV‡ = -4 mL/mol, and free energy of activation ΔG‡ = 26 kJ/mol. Below 200 MPa and above 500 MPa, the reaction is more complex, including further dissociation of B825 into monomers B777. This paper was presented at the LIIth European High Pressure Research Group (EHPRG 52) Meeting in Lyon (France), 7-12 September 2014.

  5. Synchrotron Small-Angle X-Ray Scattering Investigation on Integral Membrane Protein Light-Harvesting Complex LH2 from Photosynthetic Bacterium Rhodopseudomonas Acidophila

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Du, Lu-Chao; Weng, Yu-Xiang; Hong, Xin-Guo; Xian, Ding-Chang; Kobayashi, Katsumi

    2006-07-01

    Structures of membrane protein in solution are different from that in crystal phase. We present the primary results of small angle x-ray scattering (SAXS) resolved topological structures of a light harvesting antenna membrane protein complex LH2 from photosynthetic bacteria Rhodopseudomonas acidophila in detergent solution for the first time. Our results show that the elliptical shape of the LH2 complex in solution clearly deviates from its circular structure in crystal phase determined by x-ray diffraction. This result provides an insight into the structure and function interplay in LH2.

  6. Determination of the aggregate size in detergent solution of the light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b-protein complex from chloroplast membranes

    PubMed Central

    Butler, P. J. G.; Kühlbrandt, W.

    1988-01-01

    The molecular mass of an oligomeric integral membrane protein, the light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b-protein complex from the photosynthetic membranes of chloroplasts, has been determined in detergent solution by analytical ultracentrifugation and measurement of the density increment at constant chemical potential of all diffusible solutes. The technique used eliminates any problems resulting from detergent binding to the protein, is independent of the particular detergent used (in this case the nonionic n-octyl β-D-glucopyranoside), and gives the apparent weight-average molecular mass at different protein concentrations, allowing extrapolation to zero concentration. It means that the solutions of the complex must be brought to dialysis equilibrium with the solvent detergent solution and also requires a reliable method for measuring the protein concentration, for which amino acid analysis was used. The detergent-solubilized complex was a trimer that dissociated into monomers and dimers at low protein concentration. The accurate concentration determinations also allowed the molar chlorophyll-to-protein ratio to be measured as 15, corresponding to 8 chlorophyll a and 7 chlorophyll b molecules. PMID:16593931

  7. Complexation of copper and zinc ions with proteins of a light-harvesting complex (LHC-II) of chloroplast thylakoid membranes studied by FT-IR spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tajmir-Riahi, H. A.; Ahmed, A.

    1993-08-01

    The interaction of Zn(II) and Cu(II) ions with the light-harvesting proteins (LHC-II) of chloroplast thylakoid membranes was studied in aqueous solution with metal ion concentrations of 0.01 to 20mM, using Fourier transform-infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy. Analyses of the metal ion binding mode and protein conformational variations were carried out and correlations between spectral changes and metal—protein complexation were established. Infrared difference spectroscopic results revealed the presence of a strong metal—protein interaction at high metal ion concentrations, while at low concentrations complexation was negligible. The binding of Zn and Cu ions was found to be with the protein carbonyl groups at low metal ion concentrations, whereas CO and CN groups were the main coordination sites at higher concentrations. A major conformational variation from α-helix to β-sheet and turn structures was observed in the presence of a concentrated metal ion solution.

  8. Synthesis and Functional Reconstitution of Light-Harvesting Complex II into Polymeric Membrane Architectures.

    PubMed

    Zapf, Thomas; Tan, Cherng-Wen Darren; Reinelt, Tobias; Huber, Christoph; Shaohua, Ding; Geifman-Shochat, Susana; Paulsen, Harald; Sinner, Eva-Kathrin

    2015-12-01

    One of most important processes in nature is the harvesting and dissipation of solar energy with the help of light-harvesting complex II (LHCII). This protein, along with its associated pigments, is the main solar-energy collector in higher plants. We aimed to generate stable, highly controllable, and sustainable polymer-based membrane systems containing LHCII-pigment complexes ready for light harvesting. LHCII was produced by cell-free protein synthesis based on wheat-germ extract, and the successful integration of LHCII and its pigments into different membrane architectures was monitored. The unidirectionality of LHCII insertion was investigated by protease digestion assays. Fluorescence measurements indicated chlorophyll integration in the presence of LHCII in spherical as well as planar bilayer architectures. Surface plasmon enhanced fluorescence spectroscopy (SPFS) was used to reveal energy transfer from chlorophyll b to chlorophyll a, which indicates native folding of the LHCII proteins. PMID:26473750

  9. Movement of newly imported light-harvesting chlorophyll-binding protein from unstacked to stacked thylakoid membranes is not affected by light treatment or absence of amino-terminal threonines

    SciTech Connect

    Kohorn, B.D.; Yakir, D. )

    1990-02-05

    In higher plants and algae, the transduction of captured light energy is highly regulated as excess excitation of photosystem II (PSII) reaction centers can be redirected to photosystem I (PSI) reaction centers. Models that attempt to explain this phenomenon involve light-harvesting chlorophyll-protein complexes (LHCII) that capture light energy and migrate between PSII and PSI. This report shows that in pea chloroplasts, the major protein component of LHCII, light-harvesting chlorophyll-binding protein (LHCP), can indeed migrate within the thylakoid membrane. We show, however, that although newly imported LHCP inserts into both stacked and unstacked thylakoid membranes, it then moves only from the unstacked, PSI-rich membranes to the stacked, PSII-rich membranes. The observed migration is not affected by light treatment that induces a redistribution of captured light energy (state I-state II transition) that previously was thought to induce LHCP to migrate in the opposite direction, from stacked to unstacked membranes. A mutation that removes the site of LHCP phosphorylation, the proposed trigger of state transitions, also has no effect on the integration and movement of LHCP, but does render LHCP more susceptible to proteolytic degradation. These results are not consistent with current models that deal with the short-term change in the distribution of light energy.

  10. Forces guiding assembly of light-harvesting complex 2 in native membranes

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Lu-Ning; Duquesne, Katia; Oesterhelt, Filipp; Sturgis, James N.; Scheuring, Simon

    2011-01-01

    Interaction forces of membrane protein subunits are of importance in their structure, assembly, membrane insertion, and function. In biological membranes, and in the photosynthetic apparatus as a paradigm, membrane proteins fulfill their function by ensemble actions integrating a tight assembly of several proteins. In the bacterial photosynthetic apparatus light-harvesting complexes 2 (LH2) transfer light energy to neighboring tightly associated core complexes, constituted of light-harvesting complexes 1 (LH1) and reaction centers (RC). While the architecture of the photosynthetic unit has been described, the forces and energies assuring the structural and functional integrity of LH2, the assembly of LH2 complexes, and how LH2 interact with the other proteins in the supramolecular architecture are still unknown. Here we investigate the molecular forces of the bacterial LH2 within the native photosynthetic membrane using atomic force microscopy single-molecule imaging and force measurement in combination. The binding between LH2 subunits is fairly weak, of the order of kBT, indicating the importance of LH2 ring architecture. In contrast LH2 subunits are solid with a free energy difference of 90 kBT between folded and unfolded states. Subunit α-helices unfold either in one-step, α- and β-polypeptides unfold together, or sequentially. The unfolding force of transmembrane helices is approximately 150 pN. In the two-step unfolding process, the β-polypeptide is stabilized by the molecular environment in the membrane. Hence, intermolecular forces influence the structural and functional integrity of LH2. PMID:21606335

  11. Energy transfer and clustering of photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes in reconstituted lipid membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dewa, Takehisa; Sumino, Ayumi; Watanabe, Natsuko; Noji, Tomoyasu; Nango, Mamoru

    2013-06-01

    In purple photosynthetic bacteria, light-harvesting complex 2 (LH2) and light harvesting/reaction centre core complex (LH1-RC) play the key roles of capturing and transferring light energy and subsequent charge separation. These photosynthetic apparatuses form a supramolecular assembly; however, how the assembly influences the efficiency of energy conversion is not yet clear. We addressed this issue by evaluating the energy transfer in reconstituted photosynthetic protein complexes LH2 and LH1-RC and studying the structures and the membrane environment of the LH2/LH1-RC assemblies, which had been embedded into various lipid bilayers. Thus, LH2 and LH1-RC from Rhodopseudomonas palustris 2.1.6 were reconstituted in phosphatidylglycerol (PG), phosphatidylcholine (PC), and phosphatidylethanolamine (PE)/PG/cardiolipin (CL). Efficient energy transfer from LH2 to LH1-RC was observed in the PC and PE/PG/CL membranes. Atomic force microscopy revealed that LH2 and LH1-RC were heterogeneously distributed to form clusters in the PC and PE/PG/CL membranes. The results indicated that the phospholipid species influenced the cluster formation of LH2 and LH1-RC as well as the energy transfer efficiency.

  12. Interaction of Mg(II), Ca(II) and Mn(II) ions with the light-harvesting proteins of chloroplast thylakoid membranes studied by FT-IR difference spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ahmed, A.; Tajmir-Riahi, H. A.

    1994-03-01

    The interaction of Mg(II), Ca(II) and Mn(II) ions with the light-harvesting (LHC-II) proteins of chloroplast thylakoid membranes was investigated in aqueous solution at different metal ion concentrations (0.01-20 mM), using Fourier transform-infrared (FT-IR) difference spectroscopy. The infrared difference spectroscopic results for the amide I and amide II regions (1800-1500 cm -1) have shown a strong metal—protein interaction at high metal ion concentrations (5-20 mM), whereas at very low concentrations (0.01-1 mM) the metal cation binding is negligible. The metal ion binding is mainly via the protein carbonyl group at low cation concentration, whereas metal ion coordination to the protein CO and CN groups were observed at higher cation concentrations. The Mn—tyrosine binding was also observed at high metal ion concentrations. Major conformational changes from α-helix (48% in uncomplexed protein) to β-sheet and turn structures were observed in the presence of these metal cations at high concentrations (10-20 mM).

  13. A thioredoxin-like/β-propeller protein maintains the efficiency of light harvesting in Arabidopsis

    PubMed Central

    Brooks, Matthew D.; Sylak-Glassman, Emily J.; Fleming, Graham R.; Niyogi, Krishna K.

    2013-01-01

    The light-harvesting complexes of plants have evolved the ability to switch between efficient light harvesting and quenching forms to optimize photosynthesis in response to the environment. Several distinct mechanisms, collectively termed “nonphotochemical quenching” (NPQ), provide flexibility in this response. Here we report the isolation and characterization of a mutant, suppressor of quenching 1 (soq1), that has high NPQ even in the absence of photosystem II subunit S (PsbS), a protein that is necessary for the rapidly reversible component of NPQ. The formation of NPQ in soq1 was light intensity-dependent, and it exhibited slow relaxation kinetics and other characteristics that distinguish it from known NPQ components. Treatment with chemical inhibitors or an uncoupler, as well as crosses to mutants known to affect other NPQ components, showed that the NPQ in soq1 does not require a transthylakoid pH gradient, zeaxanthin formation, or the phosphorylation of light-harvesting complexes, and it appears to be unrelated to the photosystem II damage-and-repair cycle. Measurements of pigments and chlorophyll fluorescence lifetimes indicated that the additional NPQ in soq1 is the result of a decrease in chlorophyll excited-state lifetime and not pigment bleaching. The SOQ1 gene was isolated by map-based cloning, and it encodes a previously uncharacterized thylakoid membrane protein with thioredoxin-like and β-propeller domains located in the lumen and a haloacid-dehalogenase domain exposed to the chloroplast stroma. We propose that the role of SOQ1 is to prevent formation of a slowly reversible form of antenna quenching, thereby maintaining the efficiency of light harvesting. PMID:23818601

  14. Protein kinase that phosphorylates light-harvesting complex is autophosphorylated and is associated with photosystem II

    SciTech Connect

    Coughlan, S.J.; Hind, G.

    1987-10-06

    Thylakoid membranes were phosphorylated with (..gamma..-/sup 32/P)ATP and extracted with octyl glucoside and cholate. Among the radiolabeled phosphoproteins in the extract was a previously characterized protein kinase of 64-kDa apparent mass. The ability of this enzyme to undergo autophosphorylation in situ was used to monitor its distribution in the membrane. Fractionation studies showed that the kinase is confined to granal regions of the thylakoid, where it appears to be associated with the light-harvesting chlorophyll-protein complex of photosystem II. The kinetics of kinase autophosphorylation were investigated both in situ and in extracted, purified enzyme. In the membrane, autophosphorylation saturated within 20-30 min and was reversed with a half-time of 7-8 min upon removal of ATP or oxidative inactivation of the kinase; the accompanying dephosphorylation of light-harvesting complex was slower and kinetically complex. Fluoride (10 mM) inhibited these dephosphorylations. Autophosphorylation of the isolated kinase was independent of enzyme concentration, indicative of an intramolecular mechanism. A maximum of one serine residue per mole of kinase was esterified. Autophosphorylation was more rapid in the presence of histone IIIs, an exogenous substrate. Dephosphorylation of the isolated enzyme was not observed.

  15. Glycolipid analyses of light-harvesting chlorosomes from envelope protein mutants of Chlorobaculum tepidum.

    PubMed

    Tsukatani, Yusuke; Mizoguchi, Tadashi; Thweatt, Jennifer; Tank, Marcus; Bryant, Donald A; Tamiaki, Hitoshi

    2016-06-01

    Chlorosomes are large and efficient light-harvesting organelles in green photosynthetic bacteria, and they characteristically contain large numbers of bacteriochlorophyll c, d, or e molecules. Self-aggregated bacteriochlorophyll pigments are surrounded by a monolayer envelope membrane comprised of glycolipids and Csm proteins. Here, we analyzed glycolipid compositions of chlorosomes from the green sulfur bacterium Chlorobaculum tepidum mutants lacking one, two, or three Csm proteins by HPLC equipped with an evaporative light-scattering detector. The ratio of monogalactosyldiacylglyceride (MGDG) to rhamnosylgalactosyldiacylglyceride (RGDG) was smaller in chlorosomes from mutants lacking two or three proteins in CsmC/D/H motif family than in chlorosomes from the wild-type, whereas chlorosomes lacking CsmIJ showed relatively less RGDG than MGDG. The results suggest that the CsmC, CsmD, CsmH, and other chlorosome proteins are involved in organizing MGDG and RGDG and thereby affect the size and shape of the chlorosome. PMID:26869354

  16. A novel type of light-harvesting antenna protein of red algal origin in algae with secondary plastids

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Light, the driving force of photosynthesis, can be harmful when present in excess; therefore, any light harvesting system requires photoprotection. Members of the extended light-harvesting complex (LHC) protein superfamily are involved in light harvesting as well as in photoprotection and are found in the red and green plant lineages, with a complex distribution pattern of subfamilies in the different algal lineages. Results Here, we demonstrate that the recently discovered “red lineage chlorophyll a/b-binding-like proteins” (RedCAPs) form a monophyletic family within this protein superfamily. The occurrence of RedCAPs was found to be restricted to the red algal lineage, including red algae (with primary plastids) as well as cryptophytes, haptophytes and heterokontophytes (with secondary plastids of red algal origin). Expression of a full-length RedCAP:GFP fusion construct in the diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum confirmed the predicted plastid localisation of RedCAPs. Furthermore, we observed that similarly to the fucoxanthin chlorophyll a/c-binding light-harvesting antenna proteins also RedCAP transcripts in diatoms were regulated in a diurnal way at standard light conditions and strongly repressed at high light intensities. Conclusions The absence of RedCAPs from the green lineage implies that RedCAPs evolved in the red lineage after separation from the the green lineage. During the evolution of secondary plastids, RedCAP genes therefore must have been transferred from the nucleus of the endocytobiotic alga to the nucleus of the host cell, a process that involved complementation with pre-sequences allowing import of the gene product into the secondary plastid bound by four membranes. Based on light-dependent transcription and on localisation data, we propose that RedCAPs might participate in the light (intensity and quality)-dependent structural or functional reorganisation of the light-harvesting antennae of the photosystems upon dark to light

  17. Light-harvesting Complexes (LHCs) Cluster Spontaneously in Membrane Environment Leading to Shortening of Their Excited State Lifetimes.

    PubMed

    Natali, Alberto; Gruber, J Michael; Dietzel, Lars; Stuart, Marc C A; van Grondelle, Rienk; Croce, Roberta

    2016-08-01

    The light reactions of photosynthesis, which include light-harvesting and charge separation, take place in the amphiphilic environment of the thylakoid membrane. The light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) is the main responsible for light absorption in plants and green algae and is involved in photoprotective mechanisms that regulate the amount of excited states in the membrane. The dual function of LHCII has been extensively studied in detergent micelles, but recent results have indicated that the properties of this complex differ in a lipid environment. In this work we checked these suggestions by studying LHCII in liposomes. By combining bulk and single molecule measurements, we monitored the fluorescence characteristics of liposomes containing single complexes up to densely packed proteoliposomes. We show that the natural lipid environment per se does not alter the properties of LHCII, which for single complexes remain very similar to that in detergent. However, we show that LHCII has the strong tendency to cluster in the membrane and that protein interactions and the extent of crowding modulate the lifetimes of the excited state in the membrane. Finally, the presence of LHCII monomers at low concentrations of complexes per liposome is discussed. PMID:27252376

  18. Allelic variations of a light harvesting chlorophyll A/B protein gene (Lhcb1) associated with agronomic traits in Barley

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b-binding protein (LHCP) is one of the most abundant chloroplast proteins in plants. Its main function is to collect and transfer light energy to photosynthetic reaction centers. However, the roles of different LHCPs in light-harvesting antenna systems remain obscure. ...

  19. Membrane Crystals of Plant Light-Harvesting Complex II Disassemble Reversibly in Light

    PubMed Central

    Hind, Geoffrey; Wall, Joseph S.; Várkonyi, Zsuzsanna; Istokovics, Anita; Lambrev, Petar H.; Garab, Győző

    2014-01-01

    Using the mass-measuring capability of scanning transmission electron microscopy, we demonstrate that membrane crystals of the main light-harvesting complex of plants possess the ability to undergo light-induced dark-reversible disassociations, independently of the photochemical apparatus. This is the first direct visualization of light-driven reversible reorganizations in an isolated photosynthetic antenna. These reorganizations, identified earlier by circular dichroism (CD), can be accounted for by a biological thermo-optic transition: structural changes are induced by fast heat transients and thermal instabilities near the dissipation, and self-association of the complexes in the lipid matrix. A comparable process in native membranes is indicated by earlier findings of essentially identical kinetics, and intensity and temperature dependences of the ΔCD in granal thylakoids. PMID:24793749

  20. Electronic and Vibrational Coherences in Algal Light-Harvesting Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turner, Daniel B.; Scholes, Gregory D.

    2013-03-01

    We present broadband two-dimensional electronic spectra of a lightharvesting protein from photosynthetic algae. Analysis of the spectra show that the amplitude of the main cross peak oscillates as a function of the waiting time period. Both electronic coupling and intramolecular vibrational modes, and their mixture, can lead to such oscillations. Using predictions based on models of four-level systems, we describe ways to distinguish electronic from vibrational contributions to the coherence and find that both types of coupling contribute to the measured dynamics.

  1. Excitation energy transfer between Light-harvesting complex II and Photosystem I in reconstituted membranes.

    PubMed

    Akhtar, Parveen; Lingvay, Mónika; Kiss, Teréz; Deák, Róbert; Bóta, Attila; Ughy, Bettina; Garab, Győző; Lambrev, Petar H

    2016-04-01

    Light-harvesting complex II (LHCII), the major peripheral antenna of Photosystem II in plants, participates in several concerted mechanisms for regulation of the excitation energy and electron fluxes in thylakoid membranes. In part, these include interaction of LHCII with Photosystem I (PSI) enhancing the latter's absorption cross-section - for example in the well-known state 1 - state 2 transitions or as a long-term acclimation to high light. In this work we examined the capability of LHCII to deliver excitations to PSI in reconstituted membranes in vitro. Proteoliposomes with native plant thylakoid membrane lipids and different stoichiometric ratios of LHCII:PSI were reconstituted and studied by steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy. Fluorescence emission from LHCII was strongly decreased in PSI-LHCII membranes due to trapping of excitations by PSI. Kinetic modelling of the time-resolved fluorescence data revealed the existence of separate pools of LHCII distinguished by the time scale of energy transfer. A strongly coupled pool, equivalent to one LHCII trimer per PSI, transferred excitations to PSI with near-unity efficiency on a time scale of less than 10ps but extra LHCIIs also contributed significantly to the effective antenna size of PSI, which could be increased by up to 47% in membranes containing 3 LHCII trimers per PSI. The results demonstrate a remarkable competence of LHCII to increase the absorption cross-section of PSI, given the opportunity that the two types of complexes interact in the membrane. PMID:26827938

  2. Quantitative investigations of quantum coherence for a light-harvesting protein at conditions simulating photosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Turner, Daniel B; Dinshaw, Rayomond; Lee, Kyung-Koo; Belsley, Michael S; Wilk, Krystyna E; Curmi, Paul M G; Scholes, Gregory D

    2012-04-14

    Recent measurements using two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy (2D ES) have shown that the initial dynamic response of photosynthetic proteins can involve quantum coherence. We show how electronic coherence can be differentiated from vibrational coherence in 2D ES. On that basis we conclude that both electronic and vibrational coherences are observed in the phycobiliprotein light-harvesting complex PC645 from Chroomonas sp. CCMP270 at ambient temperature. These light-harvesting antenna proteins of the cryptophyte algae are suspended in the lumen, where the pH drops significantly under sustained illumination by sunlight. Here we measured 2D ES of PC645 at increasing levels of acidity to determine if the change in pH affects the quantum coherence; quantitative analysis reveals that the dynamics are insensitive to the pH change. PMID:22374579

  3. Functional quantum dot-protein nano bio-assembly for superior light harvesting applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mutlugun, Evren; Ozgur Safak Seker, Urartu; Hernandez-Martinez, Pedro Ludwig; Sharma, Vijay Kumar; Lesnyak, Vladimir; Gaponik, Nikolai; Eychmuller, Alexander; Demir, Hilmi Volkan

    2013-03-01

    The formation of functional bio-assemblies is crucial for the advanced biophotonic applications. In this work, we formed a nano bio-assembly, consisting of green fluorescent protein (GFP) and inorganic quantum dots (QDs), to employ as an excitonic biofunctional composite to use for light harvesting and biosensing applications. Using QDs as donor molecules with the acceptor GFP in the formed bio-assembly, we observed up-to 15-fold enhancement on the GFP emission, mediated by the strong nonradiative energy transfer. The lifetime modifications of the donor-acceptor pair were studied as a function of the number of proteins per quantum dot, and in good agreement with the proposed theoretical model based on the excitonic interaction among the species. Apart from the light harvesting system, a biosensing medium was also established, facilitated by the enzymatic activity destructing the light harvesting complex. The energy transferring QD-GFP complex was controllably modified by the addition of trypsin, by destroying the bond in between the QD-GFP complex, as verified by the observation of lifetime modifications. In summary, we developed functional excitonic nano-bio-assemblies, which we believe will open up new possibilities for advanced biophotonic applications. The author contributed equally to this work

  4. Partial purification of a spinach thylakoid protein kinase that can phosphorylate light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Clark, R.D.; Hind, G.; Bennett, J.

    1985-01-01

    Protein phosphorylation in plant tissues is particularly marked in chloroplasts, protein kinase activity being associated with the outer envelope, the soluble stromal fraction, and the thylakoid membrane. Furthermore, thylakoid-bound activity probably includes several distinct kinases, as suggested by studies of divalent cation specificity and thermal lability carried out with intact thylakoids and by subfractionation of solubilized membranes. Illumination of thylakoids, particularly with red light, promotes the rapid and extensive phosphorylation of the light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b complex (LHCII) on a threonine residue near the amino terminus of the protein. This phosphorylation is thought to be involved in regulating the distribution of absorbed quanta between photosystems II and I and is modulated by the redox state of the thylakoid plastoquinone pool. Neither of the thylakoid kinases reported to date was capable of phosphorylating purified LHCII in vitro or of incorporating phosphate into threonyl residues of exogenous substrates, that some LHCII phosphorylation was catalyzed by a preliminary fraction led workers to suggest that at least one other kinase remained to be isolated. Here, the authors report the solubilization and partial purification of a protein kinase from spinach thylakoids that is capable of phosphorylating LHCII in vitro, and they show that the specific site of phosphorylation is very nearly the same as, if not identical with, the site phosphorylated in organello.

  5. Development of Scaffolds for Light Harvesting and Photocatalysis from the Coat Protein of Tobacco Mosaic Virus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dedeo, Michel Toussaint

    The utility of a previously developed TMV-based light harvesting system has been dramatically expanded through the introduction of reactive handles for the site-specific modification of the interior and exterior surfaces. Further experiments to reengineer the coat protein have produced structures with unique, unexpected, and useful assembly properties that complement the newly available surface modifications. Energy transfer from chromophores in the RNA channel of self-assembled TMV structures to the exterior was made possible by conjugation of acceptor dyes and porphyrins to the N-terminus. By repositioning the N-terminus to the pore through circular permutation, this process was repeated to create structures that mimic the light harvesting 1 complex of photosynthetic bacteria. To study and improve upon natural photosynthesis, closely packed chromophore arrays and gold nanoparticles were tethered to the pore of stabilized TMV disks through introduction of a uniquely reactive lysine. Finally, a dimeric TMV coat protein was produced to control the distribution and arrangement of synthetic groups with synergistic activity.

  6. PHOTOSYSTEM II SUBUNIT R Is Required for Efficient Binding of LIGHT-HARVESTING COMPLEX STRESS-RELATED PROTEIN3 to Photosystem II-Light-Harvesting Supercomplexes in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii1

    PubMed Central

    Xue, Huidan; Tokutsu, Ryutaro; Bergner, Sonja Verena; Scholz, Martin; Minagawa, Jun; Hippler, Michael

    2015-01-01

    In Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, the LIGHT-HARVESTING COMPLEX STRESS-RELATED PROTEIN3 (LHCSR3) protein is crucial for efficient energy-dependent thermal dissipation of excess absorbed light energy and functionally associates with photosystem II-light-harvesting complex II (PSII-LHCII) supercomplexes. Currently, it is unknown how LHCSR3 binds to the PSII-LHCII supercomplex. In this study, we investigated the role of PHOTOSYSTEM II SUBUNIT R (PSBR) an intrinsic membrane-spanning PSII subunit, in the binding of LHCSR3 to PSII-LHCII supercomplexes. Down-regulation of PSBR expression diminished the efficiency of oxygen evolution and the extent of nonphotochemical quenching and had an impact on the stability of the oxygen-evolving complex as well as on PSII-LHCII-LHCSR3 supercomplex formation. Its down-regulation destabilized the PSII-LHCII supercomplex and strongly reduced the binding of LHCSR3 to PSII-LHCII supercomplexes, as revealed by quantitative proteomics. PHOTOSYSTEM II SUBUNIT P deletion, on the contrary, destabilized PHOTOSYSTEM II SUBUNIT Q binding but did not affect PSBR and LHCSR3 association with PSII-LHCII. In summary, these data provide clear evidence that PSBR is required for the stable binding of LHCSR3 to PSII-LHCII supercomplexes and is essential for efficient energy-dependent quenching and the integrity of the PSII-LHCII-LHCSR3 supercomplex under continuous high light. PMID:25699588

  7. A Light Switch Based on Protein S-Nitrosylation Fine-Tunes Photosynthetic Light Harvesting in Chlamydomonas.

    PubMed

    Berger, Hanna; De Mia, Marcello; Morisse, Samuel; Marchand, Christophe H; Lemaire, Stéphane D; Wobbe, Lutz; Kruse, Olaf

    2016-06-01

    Photosynthetic eukaryotes are challenged by a fluctuating light supply, demanding for a modulated expression of nucleus-encoded light-harvesting proteins associated with photosystem II (LHCII) to adjust light-harvesting capacity to the prevailing light conditions. Here, we provide clear evidence for a regulatory circuit that controls cytosolic LHCII translation in response to light quantity changes. In the green unicellular alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, the cytosolic RNA-binding protein NAB1 represses translation of certain LHCII isoform mRNAs. Specific nitrosylation of Cys-226 decreases NAB1 activity and could be demonstrated in vitro and in vivo. The less active, nitrosylated form of NAB1 is found in cells acclimated to limiting light supply, which permits accumulation of light-harvesting proteins and efficient light capture. In contrast, elevated light supply causes its denitrosylation, thereby activating the repression of light-harvesting protein synthesis, which is needed to control excitation pressure at photosystem II. Denitrosylation of recombinant NAB1 is efficiently performed by the cytosolic thioredoxin system in vitro. To our knowledge, NAB1 is the first example of stimulus-induced denitrosylation in the context of photosynthetic acclimation. By identifying this novel redox cross-talk pathway between chloroplast and cytosol, we add a new key element required for drawing a precise blue print of the regulatory network of light harvesting. PMID:27208221

  8. Effect of partial or complete elimination of light-harvesting complexes on the surface electric properties and the functions of cyanobacterial photosynthetic membranes.

    PubMed

    Dobrikova, Anelia G; Domonkos, Ildikó; Sözer, Özge; Laczkó-Dobos, Hajnalka; Kis, Mihály; Párducz, Árpád; Gombos, Zoltán; Apostolova, Emilia L

    2013-02-01

    Influence of the modification of the cyanobacterial light-harvesting complex [i.e. phycobilisomes (PBS)] on the surface electric properties and the functions of photosynthetic membranes was investigated. We used four PBS mutant strains of Synechocystis sp. PCC6803 as follows: PAL (PBS-less), CK (phycocyanin-less), BE (PSII-PBS-less) and PSI-less/apcE(-) (PSI-less with detached PBS). Modifications of the PBS content lead to changes in the cell morphology and surface electric properties of the thylakoid membranes as well as in their functions, such as photosynthetic oxygen-evolving activity, P700 kinetics and energy transfer between the pigment-protein complexes. Data reveal that the complete elimination of PBS in the PAL mutant causes a slight decrease in the electric dipole moments of the thylakoid membranes, whereas significant perturbations of the surface charges were registered in the membranes without assembled PBS-PSII macrocomplex (BE mutant) or PSI complex (PSI-less mutant). These observations correlate with the detected alterations in the membrane structural organization. Using a polarographic oxygen rate electrode, we showed that the ratio of the fast to the slow oxygen-evolving PSII centers depends on the partial or complete elimination of light-harvesting complexes, as the slow operating PSII centers dominate in the PBS-less mutant and in the mutant with detached PBS. PMID:22582961

  9. Structural Basis of Light Harvesting by Carotenoids: Peridinin-Chlorophyll- Protein from Amphidinium carterae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hofmann, Eckhard; Wrench, Pamela M.; Sharples, Frank P.; Hiller, Roger G.; Welte, Wolfram; Diederichs, Kay

    1996-06-01

    Peridinin-chlorophyll-protein, a water-soluble light-harvesting complex that has a blue-green absorbing carotenoid as its main pigment, is present in most photosynthetic dinoflagellates. Its high-resolution (2.0 angstrom) x-ray structure reveals a noncrystallographic trimer in which each polypeptide contains an unusual jellyroll fold of the α-helical amino- and carboxyl-terminal domains. These domains constitute a scaffold with pseudo-twofold symmetry surrounding a hydrophobic cavity filled by two lipid, eight peridinin, and two chlorophyll a molecules. The structural basis for efficient excitonic energy transfer from peridinin to chlorophyll is found in the clustering of peridinins around the chlorophylls at van der Waals distances.

  10. Vibronic resonances facilitate excited-state coherence in light-harvesting proteins at room temperature.

    PubMed

    Novelli, Fabio; Nazir, Ahsan; Richards, Gethin H; Roozbeh, Ashkan; Wilk, Krystyna E; Curmi, Paul M G; Davis, Jeffrey A

    2015-11-19

    Until recently it was believed that photosynthesis, a fundamental process for life on earth, could be fully understood with semiclassical models. However, puzzling quantum phenomena have been observed in several photosynthetic pigment-protein complexes, prompting questions regarding the nature and role of these effects. Recent attention has focused on discrete vibrational modes that are resonant or quasi-resonant with excitonic energy splittings and strongly coupled to these excitonic states. Here we unambiguously identify excited state coherent superpositions in photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes using a new experimental approach. Decoherence on the time scale of the excited state lifetime allows low energy (56 cm(-1)) oscillations on the signal intensity to be observed. In conjunction with an appropriate model, these oscillations provide clear and direct experimental evidence that the persistent coherences observed originate from quantum superpositions among vibronic excited states. PMID:26528956

  11. Light-Harvesting Complex Stress-Related Proteins Catalyze Excess Energy Dissipation in Both Photosystems of Physcomitrella patens.

    PubMed

    Pinnola, Alberta; Cazzaniga, Stefano; Alboresi, Alessandro; Nevo, Reinat; Levin-Zaidman, Smadar; Reich, Ziv; Bassi, Roberto

    2015-11-01

    Two LHC-like proteins, Photosystem II Subunit S (PSBS) and Light-Harvesting Complex Stress-Related (LHCSR), are essential for triggering excess energy dissipation in chloroplasts of vascular plants and green algae, respectively. The mechanism of quenching was studied in Physcomitrella patens, an early divergent streptophyta (including green algae and land plants) in which both proteins are active. PSBS was localized in grana together with photosystem II (PSII), but LHCSR was located mainly in stroma-exposed membranes together with photosystem I (PSI), and its distribution did not change upon high-light treatment. The quenched conformation can be preserved by rapidly freezing the high-light-treated tissues in liquid nitrogen. When using green fluorescent protein as an internal standard, 77K fluorescence emission spectra on isolated chloroplasts allowed for independent assessment of PSI and PSII fluorescence yield. Results showed that both photosystems underwent quenching upon high-light treatment in the wild type in contrast to mutants depleted of LHCSR, which lacked PSI quenching. Due to the contribution of LHCII, P. patens had a PSI antenna size twice as large with respect to higher plants. Thus, LHCII, which is highly abundant in stroma membranes, appears to be the target of quenching by LHCSR. PMID:26508763

  12. Conformational Switching in a Light-Harvesting Protein as Followed by Single-Molecule Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Gall, Andrew; Ilioaia, Cristian; Krüger, Tjaart P.J.; Novoderezhkin, Vladimir I.; Robert, Bruno; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2015-01-01

    Among the ultimate goals of protein physics, the complete, experimental description of the energy paths leading to protein conformational changes remains a challenge. Single protein fluorescence spectroscopy constitutes an approach of choice for addressing protein dynamics, and, among naturally fluorescing proteins, light-harvesting (LH) proteins from purple bacteria constitute an ideal object for such a study. LHs bind bacteriochlorophyll a molecules, which confer on them a high intrinsic fluorescence yield. Moreover, the electronic properties of these pigment-proteins result from the strong excitonic coupling between their bound bacteriochlorophyll a molecules in combination with the large energetic disorder due to slow fluctuations in their structure. As a result, the position and probability of their fluorescence transition delicately depends on the precise realization of the disorder of the set of bound pigments, which is governed by the LH protein dynamics. Analysis of these parameters using time-resolved single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy thus yields direct access to the protein dynamics. Applying this technique to the LH2 protein from Rhodovulum (Rdv.) sulfidophilum, the structure—and consequently the fluorescence properties—of which depends on pH, allowed us to follow a single protein, pH-induced, reversible, conformational transition. Hence, for the first time, to our knowledge, a protein transition can be visualized through changes in the electronic structure of the intrinsic cofactors, at a level of a single LH protein, which opens a new, to our knowledge, route for understanding the changes in energy landscape that underlie protein function and adaptation to the needs of living organisms. PMID:26039172

  13. Top-Down Mass Spectrometry Analysis of Membrane-Bound Light-Harvesting Complex 2 from Rhodobacter sphaeroides.

    PubMed

    Lu, Yue; Zhang, Hao; Cui, Weidong; Saer, Rafael; Liu, Haijun; Gross, Michael L; Blankenship, Robert E

    2015-12-15

    We report a top-down proteomic analysis of the membrane-bound peripheral light-harvesting complex LH2 isolated from the purple photosynthetic bacterium Rhodobacter sphaeroides. The LH2 complex is coded for by the puc operon. The Rb. sphaeroides genome contains two puc operons, designated puc1BAC and puc2BA. Although previous work has shown consistently that the LH2 β polypeptide coded by the puc2B gene was assembled into LH2 complexes, there are contradictory reports as to whether the Puc2A polypeptides are incorporated into LH2 complexes. Furthermore, post-translational modifications of this protein offer the prospect that it could coordinate bacteriochlorophyll a (Bchl a) by a modified N-terminal residue. Here, we describe the components of the LH2 complex on the basis of electron-capture dissociation fragmentation to confirm the identity and sequence of the protein's subunits. We found that both gene products of the β polypeptides are expressed and assembled in the mature LH2 complex, but only the Puc1A-encoded polypeptide α is observed here. The methionine of the Puc2B-encoded polypeptide is missing, and a carboxyl group is attached to the threonine at the N-terminus. Surprisingly, one amino acid encoded as an isoleucine in both the puc2B gene and the mRNA is found as valine in the mature LH2 complex, suggesting an unexpected and unusual post-translational modification or a specific tRNA recoding of this one amino acid. PMID:26574182

  14. The light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b binding proteins Lhcb1 and Lhcb2 play complementary roles during state transitions in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Pietrzykowska, Malgorzata; Suorsa, Marjaana; Semchonok, Dmitry A; Tikkanen, Mikko; Boekema, Egbert J; Aro, Eva-Mari; Jansson, Stefan

    2014-09-01

    Photosynthetic light harvesting in plants is regulated by phosphorylation-driven state transitions: functional redistributions of the major trimeric light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) to balance the relative excitation of photosystem I and photosystem II. State transitions are driven by reversible LHCII phosphorylation by the STN7 kinase and PPH1/TAP38 phosphatase. LHCII trimers are composed of Lhcb1, Lhcb2, and Lhcb3 proteins in various trimeric configurations. Here, we show that despite their nearly identical amino acid composition, the functional roles of Lhcb1 and Lhcb2 are different but complementary. Arabidopsis thaliana plants lacking only Lhcb2 contain thylakoid protein complexes similar to wild-type plants, where Lhcb2 has been replaced by Lhcb1. However, these do not perform state transitions, so phosphorylation of Lhcb2 seems to be a critical step. In contrast, plants lacking Lhcb1 had a more profound antenna remodeling due to a decrease in the amount of LHCII trimers influencing thylakoid membrane structure and, more indirectly, state transitions. Although state transitions are also found in green algae, the detailed architecture of the extant seed plant light-harvesting antenna can now be dated back to a time after the divergence of the bryophyte and spermatophyte lineages, but before the split of the angiosperm and gymnosperm lineages more than 300 million years ago. PMID:25194026

  15. Light Harvesting Proteins for Solar Fuel Generation in Bioengineered Photoelectrochemical Cells

    PubMed Central

    Ihssen, Julian; Braun, Artur; Faccio, Greta; Gajda-Schrantz, Krisztina; Thöny-Meyer, Linda

    2014-01-01

    The sun is the primary energy source of our planet and potentially can supply all societies with more than just their basic energy needs. Demand of electric energy can be satisfied with photovoltaics, however the global demand for fuels is even higher. The direct way to produce the solar fuel hydrogen is by water splitting in photoelectrochemical (PEC) cells, an artificial mimic of photosynthesis. There is currently strong resurging interest for solar fuels produced by PEC cells, but some fundamental technological problems need to be solved to make PEC water splitting an economic, competitive alternative. One of the problems is to provide a low cost, high performing water oxidizing and oxygen evolving photoanode in an environmentally benign setting. Hematite, α-Fe2O3, satisfies many requirements for a good PEC photoanode, but its efficiency is insufficient in its pristine form. A promising strategy for enhancing photocurrent density takes advantage of photosynthetic proteins. In this paper we give an overview of how electrode surfaces in general and hematite photoanodes in particular can be functionalized with light harvesting proteins. Specifically, we demonstrate how low-cost biomaterials such as cyanobacterial phycocyanin and enzymatically produced melanin increase the overall performance of virtually no-cost metal oxide photoanodes in a PEC system. The implementation of biomaterials changes the overall nature of the photoanode assembly in a way that aggressive alkaline electrolytes such as concentrated KOH are not required anymore. Rather, a more environmentally benign and pH neutral electrolyte can be used. PMID:24678669

  16. Third order nonlinear optical properties of stacked bacteriochlorophylls in bacterial photosynthetic light-harvesting proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Chen, L.X.; Laible, P.D.; Spano, F.C.; Manas, E.S.

    1997-09-01

    Enhancement of the nonresonant second order molecular hyperpolarizabilities {gamma} were observed in stacked macrocyclic molecular systems, previously in a {micro}-oxo silicon phthalocyanine (SiPcO) monomer, dimer and trimer series, and now in bacteriochlorophyll a (BChla) arrays of light harvesting (LH) proteins. Compared to monomeric BChla in a tetrahydrofuran (THF) solution, the <{gamma}> for each macrocycle was enhanced in naturally occurring stacked macrocyclic molecular systems in the bacterial photosynthetic LH proteins where BChla`s are arranged in tilted face-to-face arrays. In addition, the {gamma} enhancement is more significant in B875 of LH1 than in B850 in LH2. Theoretical modeling of the nonresonant {gamma} enhancement using simplified molecular orbitals for model SiPcO indicated that the energy level of the two photon state is crucial to the {gamma} enhancement when a two photon process is involved, whereas the charge transfer between the monomers is largely responsible when one photon near resonant process is involved. The calculated results can be extended to {gamma} enhancement in B875 and B850 arrays, suggesting that BChla in B875 are more strongly coupled than in B850. In addition, a 50--160 fold increase in <{gamma}> for the S{sub 1} excited state of relative to S{sub 0} of bacteriochlorophyll in vivo was observed which provides an alternative method for probing excited state dynamics and a potential application for molecular switching.

  17. Single-residue insertion switches the quaternary structure and exciton states of cryptophyte light-harvesting proteins.

    PubMed

    Harrop, Stephen J; Wilk, Krystyna E; Dinshaw, Rayomond; Collini, Elisabetta; Mirkovic, Tihana; Teng, Chang Ying; Oblinsky, Daniel G; Green, Beverley R; Hoef-Emden, Kerstin; Hiller, Roger G; Scholes, Gregory D; Curmi, Paul M G

    2014-07-01

    Observation of coherent oscillations in the 2D electronic spectra (2D ES) of photosynthetic proteins has led researchers to ask whether nontrivial quantum phenomena are biologically significant. Coherent oscillations have been reported for the soluble light-harvesting phycobiliprotein (PBP) antenna isolated from cryptophyte algae. To probe the link between spectral properties and protein structure, we determined crystal structures of three PBP light-harvesting complexes isolated from different species. Each PBP is a dimer of αβ subunits in which the structure of the αβ monomer is conserved. However, we discovered two dramatically distinct quaternary conformations, one of which is specific to the genus Hemiselmis. Because of steric effects emerging from the insertion of a single amino acid, the two αβ monomers are rotated by ∼73° to an "open" configuration in contrast to the "closed" configuration of other cryptophyte PBPs. This structural change is significant for the light-harvesting function because it disrupts the strong excitonic coupling between two central chromophores in the closed form. The 2D ES show marked cross-peak oscillations assigned to electronic and vibrational coherences in the closed-form PC645. However, such features appear to be reduced, or perhaps absent, in the open structures. Thus cryptophytes have evolved a structural switch controlled by an amino acid insertion to modulate excitonic interactions and therefore the mechanisms used for light harvesting. PMID:24979784

  18. Single-residue insertion switches the quaternary structure and exciton states of cryptophyte light-harvesting proteins

    PubMed Central

    Harrop, Stephen J.; Wilk, Krystyna E.; Dinshaw, Rayomond; Collini, Elisabetta; Mirkovic, Tihana; Teng, Chang Ying; Oblinsky, Daniel G.; Green, Beverley R.; Hoef-Emden, Kerstin; Hiller, Roger G.; Scholes, Gregory D.; Curmi, Paul M. G.

    2014-01-01

    Observation of coherent oscillations in the 2D electronic spectra (2D ES) of photosynthetic proteins has led researchers to ask whether nontrivial quantum phenomena are biologically significant. Coherent oscillations have been reported for the soluble light-harvesting phycobiliprotein (PBP) antenna isolated from cryptophyte algae. To probe the link between spectral properties and protein structure, we determined crystal structures of three PBP light-harvesting complexes isolated from different species. Each PBP is a dimer of αβ subunits in which the structure of the αβ monomer is conserved. However, we discovered two dramatically distinct quaternary conformations, one of which is specific to the genus Hemiselmis. Because of steric effects emerging from the insertion of a single amino acid, the two αβ monomers are rotated by ∼73° to an “open” configuration in contrast to the “closed” configuration of other cryptophyte PBPs. This structural change is significant for the light-harvesting function because it disrupts the strong excitonic coupling between two central chromophores in the closed form. The 2D ES show marked cross-peak oscillations assigned to electronic and vibrational coherences in the closed-form PC645. However, such features appear to be reduced, or perhaps absent, in the open structures. Thus cryptophytes have evolved a structural switch controlled by an amino acid insertion to modulate excitonic interactions and therefore the mechanisms used for light harvesting. PMID:24979784

  19. Energy transfer in spectrally inhomogeneous light-harvesting pigment-protein complexes of purple bacteria.

    PubMed Central

    Hess, S; Akesson, E; Cogdell, R J; Pullerits, T; Sundström, V

    1995-01-01

    Energy transfer within the peripheral light-harvesting antenna of the purple bacteria Rhodobacter sphaeroides and Rhodopseudomonas palustris was studied by one- and two-color pump-probe absorption spectroscopy with approximately 100-fs tunable pulses at room temperature and at 77 K. The energy transfer from B800 to B850 occurs with a time constant of 0.7 +/- 0.05 ps at room temperature and 1.8 +/- 0.2 ps at 77 K and is similar in both species. Anisotropy measurements suggest a limited but fast B800 <--> B800 transfer time (tau approximately 0.3 ps). This is analyzed as incoherent hopping of the excitation in a system of spectrally inhomogeneous antenna pigment-protein complexes, by a master equation approach. The simulations show that the measured B800 dynamics is well described as energy transfer with a characteristic average nearest-neighbor pairwise transfer time of 0.35 ps among approximately 10 Bchl molecules in a circular arrangement, in good agreement with the recent high-resolution structure of LH2. The possible presence of fast intramolecular relaxation processes within the Bchl a molecule was investigated by measurement of time-resolved difference absorption spectra and kinetics of Bchl a in solution and in low-temperature glasses. From these measurements it is concluded that fast transients observed at room temperature are due mainly to solvation processes, whereas at 77 K predominantly slower (> 10-ps) relaxation occurs. Images FIGURE 11 PMID:8599629

  20. Light-Harvesting Complex Protein LHCBM9 Is Critical for Photosystem II Activity and Hydrogen Production in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii.

    PubMed

    Grewe, Sabrina; Ballottari, Matteo; Alcocer, Marcelo; D'Andrea, Cosimo; Blifernez-Klassen, Olga; Hankamer, Ben; Mussgnug, Jan H; Bassi, Roberto; Kruse, Olaf

    2014-04-01

    Photosynthetic organisms developed multiple strategies for balancing light-harvesting versus intracellular energy utilization to survive ever-changing environmental conditions. The light-harvesting complex (LHC) protein family is of paramount importance for this function and can form light-harvesting pigment protein complexes. In this work, we describe detailed analyses of the photosystem II (PSII) LHC protein LHCBM9 of the microalga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii in terms of expression kinetics, localization, and function. In contrast to most LHC members described before, LHCBM9 expression was determined to be very low during standard cell cultivation but strongly increased as a response to specific stress conditions, e.g., when nutrient availability was limited. LHCBM9 was localized as part of PSII supercomplexes but was not found in association with photosystem I complexes. Knockdown cell lines with 50 to 70% reduced amounts of LHCBM9 showed reduced photosynthetic activity upon illumination and severe perturbation of hydrogen production activity. Functional analysis, performed on isolated PSII supercomplexes and recombinant LHCBM9 proteins, demonstrated that presence of LHCBM9 resulted in faster chlorophyll fluorescence decay and reduced production of singlet oxygen, indicating upgraded photoprotection. We conclude that LHCBM9 has a special role within the family of LHCII proteins and serves an important protective function during stress conditions by promoting efficient light energy dissipation and stabilizing PSII supercomplexes. PMID:24706511

  1. Regulation of Excitation Energy in a Wheat Mutant Deficient in Light-Harvesting Pigment Protein Complex 1

    PubMed Central

    Duysen, Murray E.; Freeman, Thomas P.; Williams, Norman D.; Olson, Linda L.

    1984-01-01

    Chloroplasts of the CD3 wheat mutant were deficient primarily in chlorophyll of light harvesting pigment proteins (LHPP) 1 and 2 and CP1a. The reduced level of protein associated with chlorophyll of LHPP1 and LHPP2 and the reduced level of low molecular weight polypeptides between 23 and 29 kilodaltons confirmed that the CD3 mutant was deficient in the LHPP complex. The high fluorescence emission ratio at 740 (F740) to 686 nanometers (F686) observed from chloroplasts of normal wheat following light induced phosphorylation of the LHPP complex was not noted from mutant chloroplasts. The long wavelength peak fluorescence emission (F740) was shifted to a shorter wavelength peak (F725) and was reduced in intensity compared to that of normal wheat thylakoids. The ratio of variable fluorescence to maximum fluorescence, a measure of PSII photochemical efficiency, was the same for the normal wheat and mutant leaves. The ratios of uncoupled photosystem I/photosystem II electron transport rates for mutant and normal wheat chloroplasts were similar at saturating light suggesting that absorbed excitation energy was distributed to the two photosystem reaction centers of the mutant in a similar manner as in the normal wheat. Proteins of the LHPP complex were differentially phosphorylated by action of a membrane protein kinase when both normal wheat and CD3 mutant thylakoids were irradiated without an electron transport chain acceptor. Even though the F740/F686 ratio was low in mutant thylakoids, the phosphorylation of the 27-kilodalton LHPP polypeptide was consistent with the mutant being in a state II condition. The data gave rise to the suggestion that the F740/F686 ratio might not indicate excitation energy distribution to the two photosystems in the mutant. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 PMID:16663882

  2. ARCHITECTURE OF A CHARGE-TRANSFER STATE REGULATING LIGHT HARVESTING IN A PLANT ANTENNA PROTEIN

    SciTech Connect

    Fleming, Graham; Ahn, Tae Kyu; Avenson, Thomas J.; Ballottari, Matteo; Cheng, Yuan-Chung; Niyogi, Krishna K.; Bassi, Roberto; Fleming, Graham R.

    2008-04-02

    Energy-dependent quenching of excess absorbed light energy (qE) is a vital mechanism for regulating photosynthetic light harvesting in higher plants. All of the physiological characteristics of qE have been positively correlated with charge-transfer between coupled chlorophyll and zeaxanthin molecules in the light-harvesting antenna of photosystem II (PSII). In this work, we present evidence for charge-transfer quenching in all three of the individual minor antenna complexes of PSII (CP29, CP26, and CP24), and we conclude that charge-transfer quenching in CP29 involves a de-localized state of an excitonically coupled chlorophyll dimer. We propose that reversible conformational changes in CP29 can `tune? the electronic coupling between the chlorophylls in this dimer, thereby modulating the energy of the chlorophylls-zeaxanthin charge-transfer state and switching on and off the charge-transfer quenching during qE.

  3. A novel cryptochrome in the diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum influences the regulation of light-harvesting protein levels.

    PubMed

    Juhas, Matthias; von Zadow, Andrea; Spexard, Meike; Schmidt, Matthias; Kottke, Tilman; Büchel, Claudia

    2014-05-01

    Diatoms possess several genes for proteins of the cryptochrome/photolyase family. A typical sequence for a plant cryptochrome was not found in our analysis of the Phaeodactylum tricornutum genome, but one protein grouped with higher plant and green algal cryptochromes. This protein, CryP, binds FAD and 5,10-methenyltetrahydrofolate, according to our spectroscopic studies on heterologously expressed protein. 5,10-Methenyltetrahydrofolate binding is a feature common to both cyclobutane pyrimidine dimer photolyases and DASH cryptochromes. In recombinant CryP, however, the FAD chromophore was present in its neutral radical state and had a red-shifted absorption maximum at 637 nm, which is more characteristic for a DASH cryptochrome than a cyclobutane pyrimidine dimer photolyase. Upon illumination with blue light, the fully reduced state of FAD was formed in the presence of reductant. Expression of CryP was silenced by antisense approaches, and the resulting cell lines showed increased levels of proteins of light-harvesting complexes, the Lhcf proteins, in vivo. In contrast, the levels of proteins active in light protection, the Lhcx proteins, were reduced. Thus, CryP cannot be directly grouped with known members of the cryptochrome/photolyase family. Of all P. tricornutum proteins, it is the most similar in sequence to a plant cryptochrome, and is involved in the regulation of light-harvesting protein expression, but shows spectroscopic features and a chromophore composition that are most typical of a DASH cryptochrome. PMID:24628952

  4. Spectroscopic study of the light-harvesting protein C-phycocyanin associated with colorless linker peptides

    SciTech Connect

    Pizarro, Shelly A.

    2000-05-12

    The phycobilisome (PBS) light-harvesting antenna is composed of chromophore-containing biliproteins and 'colorless' linker peptides and is structurally designed to support unidirectional transfer of excitation energy from the periphery of the PBS to its core. The linker peptides have a unique role in this transfer process by modulating the spectral properties of the associated biliprotein. There is only one three-dimensional structure of a biliprotein/linker complex available to date (APC/LC7.8) and the mechanism of interaction between these two proteins remains unknown. This study brings together a detailed spectroscopic characterization of C-Phycocyanin (PC)-linker complexes (isolated from Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002) with proteomic analysis of the linker amino acid sequences to produce a model for biliprotein/linker interaction. The amino acid sequences of the rod linkers [LR8.9, LR32.3 and LRC28.5] were examined to identify evolutionarily conserved regions important to either the structure or function of this protein family. Although there is not one common homologous site among all the linkers, there are strong trends across each separate subset (LC, LR and LRC) and the N-terminal segments of both LR32.3 and LRC28.5 display multiple regions of similarity with other linkers. Predictions of the secondary structure of LR32.3 and LRC28.5, and comparison to the crystal structure of LC7.8, further narrowed the candidates for interaction sites with the PC chromophores. Measurements of the absorption, fluorescence, CD and excitation anisotropy of PC trimer, PC/LR32.3, and PC/LRC28.5, document the spectroscopic effect of each linker peptide on the PC chromophores at a series of temperatures (298 to 77 K). Because LR32.3 and LRC28.5 modulate the PC trimer spectral properties in distinct manners, it suggests different chromophore-interaction mechanisms for each linker. The low temperature absorbance spectrum of the PC trimer is consistent with an excitonic coupling

  5. Micelle-Induced Self-Assembling Protein Nanowires: Versatile Supramolecular Scaffolds for Designing the Light-Harvesting System.

    PubMed

    Sun, Hongcheng; Zhang, Xiyu; Miao, Lu; Zhao, Linlu; Luo, Quan; Xu, Jiayun; Liu, Junqiu

    2016-01-26

    Organic nanoparticle induced self-assembly of proteins with periodic nanostructures is a promising and burgeoning strategy to develop functional biomimetic nanomaterials. Cricoid proteins afford monodispersed and well-defined hollow centers, and can be used to multivalently interact with geometrically symmetric nanoparticles to form one-dimensional protein nanoarrays. Herein, we report that core-cross-linked micelles can direct cricoid stable protein one (SP1) to self-assembling nanowires through multiple electrostatic interactions. One micelle can act as an organic nanoparticle to interact with two central concaves of SP1 in an opposite orientation to form a sandwich structure, further controlling the assembly direction to supramolecular protein nanowires. The reported versatile supramolecular scaffolds can be optionally manipulated to develop multifunctional integrated or synergistic biomimetic nanomaterials. Artificial light-harvesting nanowires are further developed to mimic the energy transfer process of photosynthetic bacteria for their structural similarity, by means of labeling donor and acceptor chromophores to SP1 rings and spherical micelles, respectively. The absorbing energy can be transferred within the adjacent donors around the ring and shuttling the collected energy to the nearby acceptor chromophore. The artificial light-harvesting nanowires are designed by mimicking the structural characteristic of natural LH-2 complex, which are meaningful in exploring the photosynthesis process in vitro. PMID:26634314

  6. Protein-Framed Multi-Porphyrin Micelles for a Hybrid Natural-Artificial Light-Harvesting Nanosystem.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yannan; Jin, Jiyang; Deng, Hongping; Li, Ke; Zheng, Yongli; Yu, Chunyang; Zhou, Yongfeng

    2016-07-01

    A micelle-like hybrid natural-artificial light-harvesting nanosystem was prepared through protein-framed electrostatic self-assembly of phycocyanin and a four-armed porphyrin star polymer. The nanosystem has a special structure of pomegranate-like unimolecular micelle aggregate with one phycocyanin acceptor in the center and multiple porphyrin donors in the shell. It can inhibit donor self-quenching effectively and display efficient transfer of excitation energy (about 80.1 %) in water. Furthermore, the number of donors contributing to a single acceptor could reach as high as about 179 in this nanosystem. PMID:27187799

  7. An atypical member of the light-harvesting complex stress-related protein family modulates diatom responses to light.

    PubMed

    Bailleul, Benjamin; Rogato, Alessandra; de Martino, Alessandra; Coesel, Sacha; Cardol, Pierre; Bowler, Chris; Falciatore, Angela; Finazzi, Giovanni

    2010-10-19

    Diatoms are prominent phytoplanktonic organisms that contribute around 40% of carbon assimilation in the oceans. They grow and perform optimally in variable environments, being able to cope with unpredictable changes in the amount and quality of light. The molecular mechanisms regulating diatom light responses are, however, still obscure. Using knockdown Phaeodactylum tricornutum transgenic lines, we reveal the key function of a member of the light-harvesting complex stress-related (LHCSR) protein family, denoted LHCX1, in modulation of excess light energy dissipation. In contrast to green algae, this gene is already maximally expressed in nonstressful light conditions and encodes a protein required for efficient light responses and growth. LHCX1 also influences natural variability in photoresponse, as evidenced in ecotypes isolated from different latitudes that display different LHCX1 protein levels. We conclude, therefore, that this gene plays a pivotal role in managing light responses in diatoms. PMID:20921421

  8. An atypical member of the light-harvesting complex stress-related protein family modulates diatom responses to light

    PubMed Central

    Bailleul, Benjamin; Rogato, Alessandra; de Martino, Alessandra; Coesel, Sacha; Cardol, Pierre; Bowler, Chris; Falciatore, Angela; Finazzi, Giovanni

    2010-01-01

    Diatoms are prominent phytoplanktonic organisms that contribute around 40% of carbon assimilation in the oceans. They grow and perform optimally in variable environments, being able to cope with unpredictable changes in the amount and quality of light. The molecular mechanisms regulating diatom light responses are, however, still obscure. Using knockdown Phaeodactylum tricornutum transgenic lines, we reveal the key function of a member of the light-harvesting complex stress-related (LHCSR) protein family, denoted LHCX1, in modulation of excess light energy dissipation. In contrast to green algae, this gene is already maximally expressed in nonstressful light conditions and encodes a protein required for efficient light responses and growth. LHCX1 also influences natural variability in photoresponse, as evidenced in ecotypes isolated from different latitudes that display different LHCX1 protein levels. We conclude, therefore, that this gene plays a pivotal role in managing light responses in diatoms. PMID:20921421

  9. Primary light-harvesting system: phycobilisomes and associated membranes. Progress report, January 1, 1981-December 31, 1981

    SciTech Connect

    Gantt, E.

    1981-01-01

    Phycobilisomes, serving as primary light harvesting complexes in cyanobacteria and red algae, were investigated. Structurally the phycobilisomes of both groups have the same fundamental phycobiliprotein arrangement. Allophycocyanin is in the center near the thylakoid. Stacked rods composed of phycocyanin, or phycocyanin-phycoerythrin radiate peripherally from the allophycocyanin core. Phycobilisomes of Nostoc sp. and Fremyella diplosiphon, after separation into separate allophycocyanin and phycoerythrin-phycocyanin fractions have been associated in vitro. Hybrid phycobilisomes, derived from mixtures of phycobiliprotein from these species were also obtained. The interaction is specific since reassociation was not obtained with phycobiliprotein complexes of some other algae. Phycobilisomes, whether native, or associated in vitro, were similar in their sedimentation, absorption, fluorescence excitation, fluorescence emission, and by electron microscopy. Furthermore, many of the colorless polypeptides were also highly similar between Nostoc and Fremyella. The similarity formed may reflect an evolutionary relationship between the two species. The polypeptide composition of Porphyridium cruentum phycobilisomes is the most complex of any thus far examined. The phycobiliprotein containing polypeptides comprised 84% of the total stainable protein, while the remaining were colorless. Most of the colorless polypeptides occurred in a pelletable fraction, which was enriched in allophycocyanin and phycocyanin, it is probable that some are involved in the linking of these phycobiliproteins.

  10. Tracking energy transfer between light harvesting complex 2 and 1 in photosynthetic membranes grown under high and low illumination

    PubMed Central

    Lüer, Larry; Moulisová, Vladimíra; Henry, Sarah; Polli, Dario; Brotosudarmo, Tatas H. P.; Hoseinkhani, Sajjad; Brida, Daniele; Lanzani, Guglielmo; Cerullo, Giulio; Cogdell, Richard J.

    2012-01-01

    Energy transfer (ET) between B850 and B875 molecules in light harvesting complexes LH2 and LH1/RC (reaction center) complexes has been investigated in membranes of Rhodopseudomonas palustris grown under high- and low-light conditions. In these bacteria, illumination intensity during growth strongly affects the type of LH2 complexes synthesized, their optical spectra, and their amount of energetic disorder. We used a specially built femtosecond spectrometer, combining tunable narrowband pump with broadband white-light probe pulses, together with an analytical method based on derivative spectroscopy for disentangling the congested transient absorption spectra of LH1 and LH2 complexes. This procedure allows real-time tracking of the forward (LH2 → LH1) and backward (LH2←LH1) ET processes and unambiguous determination of the corresponding rate constants. In low-light grown samples, we measured lower ET rates in both directions with respect to high-light ones, which is explained by reduced spectral overlap between B850 and B875 due to partial redistribution of oscillator strength into a higher energetic exciton transition. We find that the low-light adaptation in R. palustris leads to a reduced elementary backward ET rate, in accordance with the low probability of two simultaneous excitations reaching the same LH1/RC complex under weak illumination. Our study suggests that backward ET is not just an inevitable consequence of vectorial ET with small energetic offsets, but is in fact actively managed by photosynthetic bacteria. PMID:22307601

  11. Tracking energy transfer between light harvesting complex 2 and 1 in photosynthetic membranes grown under high and low illumination.

    PubMed

    Lüer, Larry; Moulisová, Vladimíra; Henry, Sarah; Polli, Dario; Brotosudarmo, Tatas H P; Hoseinkhani, Sajjad; Brida, Daniele; Lanzani, Guglielmo; Cerullo, Giulio; Cogdell, Richard J

    2012-01-31

    Energy transfer (ET) between B850 and B875 molecules in light harvesting complexes LH2 and LH1/RC (reaction center) complexes has been investigated in membranes of Rhodopseudomonas palustris grown under high- and low-light conditions. In these bacteria, illumination intensity during growth strongly affects the type of LH2 complexes synthesized, their optical spectra, and their amount of energetic disorder. We used a specially built femtosecond spectrometer, combining tunable narrowband pump with broadband white-light probe pulses, together with an analytical method based on derivative spectroscopy for disentangling the congested transient absorption spectra of LH1 and LH2 complexes. This procedure allows real-time tracking of the forward (LH2 → LH1) and backward (LH2←LH1) ET processes and unambiguous determination of the corresponding rate constants. In low-light grown samples, we measured lower ET rates in both directions with respect to high-light ones, which is explained by reduced spectral overlap between B850 and B875 due to partial redistribution of oscillator strength into a higher energetic exciton transition. We find that the low-light adaptation in R. palustris leads to a reduced elementary backward ET rate, in accordance with the low probability of two simultaneous excitations reaching the same LH1/RC complex under weak illumination. Our study suggests that backward ET is not just an inevitable consequence of vectorial ET with small energetic offsets, but is in fact actively managed by photosynthetic bacteria. PMID:22307601

  12. Mutations that affect structure and assembly of light-harvesting proteins in the cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. strain 6701

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, L.K.; Rayner, M.C.; Eiserling, F.A.

    1987-01-01

    The unicellular cyanobacterium Synechocystis sp. strain 6701 was mutagenized with UV irradiation and screened for pigment changes that indicated genetic lesions involving the light-harvesting proteins of the phycobilisome. A previous examination of the pigment mutant UV16 showed an assembly defect in the phycocyanin component of the phycobilisome. Mutagenesis of UV16 produced an additional double mutant, UV16-40, with decreased phycoerythrin content. Phycocyanin and phycoerythrin were isolated from UV16-40 and compared with normal biliproteins. The results suggested that the UV16 mutation affected the alpha subunit of phycocyanin, while the phycoerythrin beta subunit from UV16-40 had lost one of its three chromophores. Characterization of the unassembled phycobilisome components in these mutants suggests that these strains will be useful for probing in vivo the regulated expression and assembly of phycobilisomes.

  13. Molecular topology of the photosynthetic light-harvesting pigment complex, peridinin-chlorophyll a-protein, from marine dinoflagellates.

    PubMed

    Song, P S; Koka, P; Prézelin, B B; Haxo, F T

    1976-10-01

    The photosynthetic light-harvesting complex, peridinin-chlorophyll a-protein, was isolated from several marine dinoflagellates including Glenodinium sp. by Sephadex and ion-exchange chromatography. The carotenoid (peridinin)-chlorophyll a ratio in the complex is estimated to be 4:1. The fluorescence excitation spectrum of the complex indicates that energy absorbed by the carotenoid is transferred to the chlorophyll a molecule with 100% efficiency. Fluorescence lifetime measurements indicate that the energy transfer is much faster than fluorescence emission from chlorophyll a. The four peridinin molecules within the complex appear to form two allowed exciton bands which split the main absorption band of the carotenoid into two circular dichronic bands (with negative ellipticity band at 538 nm and positive band at 463 nm in the case of peridinin-chlorophyl a-protein complex from Glenodinium sp.). The fluorescence polarization of chlorophyll a in the complex at 200 K is about 0.1 in both circular dichroic excitation bands of the carotenoid chromophore. From these circular dichroic and fluorescence polarization data, a possible molecular arrangement of the four peridinin and chlorophyll molecules has been deduced for the complex. The structure of the complex deduced is also consistent with the magnitude of the exciton spliting (ca. greater than 3000 cm-1) at the intermolecular distance in the dimer pair of peridinin (ca. 12 A). This structural feature accounts for the efficient light-harvesting process of dinoflagellates as the exciton interaction lengthens the lifetime of peridinin (radiative) and the complex topology increases the energy transfer probability. The complex is, therefore, a useful molecular model for elucidating the mechanism and efficiency of solar energy conversion in vivo as well as in vitro. PMID:987799

  14. Isolation and Characterization of a Light-Harvesting Chlorophyll a/b Protein Complex Associated with Photosystem I 1

    PubMed Central

    Lam, Eric; Oritz, William; Mayfield, Stephen; Malkin, Richard

    1984-01-01

    A chlorophyll a/b protein complex has been isolated from a resolved native photosystem I complex by mildly dissociating sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The chlorophyll a/b protein contains a single polypeptide of molecular weight 20 kilodaltons, and has a chlorophyll a/b ratio of 3.5 to 4.0. The visible absorbance spectrum of the chlorophyll a/b protein complex showed a maximum at 667 nanometers in the red region and a 77 K fluorescence emission maximum at 681 nanometers. Alternatively, by treatment of the native photosystem I complex with lithium dodecyl sulfate and Triton, the chlorophyll a/b protein complex could be isolated by chromatography on Sephadex G-75. Immunological assays using antibodies to the P700-chlorophyll a-protein and the photosystem II light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b protein show no cross-reaction between the photosystem I chlorophyll a/b protein and the other two chlorophyll-containing protein complexes. Images Fig. 3 Fig. 4 Fig. 5 Fig. 6 PMID:16663476

  15. Cyanobacterial flv4-2 Operon-Encoded Proteins Optimize Light Harvesting and Charge Separation in Photosystem II.

    PubMed

    Chukhutsina, Volha; Bersanini, Luca; Aro, Eva-Mari; van Amerongen, Herbert

    2015-05-01

    Photosystem II (PSII) complexes drive the water-splitting reaction necessary to transform sunlight into chemical energy. However, too much light can damage and disrupt PSII. In cyanobacteria, the flv4-2 operon encodes three proteins (Flv2, Flv4, and Sll0218), which safeguard PSII activity under air-level CO2 and in high light conditions. However, the exact mechanism of action of these proteins has not been clarified yet. We demonstrate that the PSII electron transfer properties are influenced by the flv4-2 operon-encoded proteins. Accelerated secondary charge separation kinetics was observed upon expression/overexpression of the flv4-2 operon. This is likely induced by docking of the Flv2/Flv4 heterodimer in the vicinity of the QB pocket of PSII, which, in turn, increases the QB redox potential and consequently stabilizes forward electron transfer. The alternative electron transfer route constituted by Flv2/Flv4 sequesters electrons from QB(-) guaranteeing the dissipation of excess excitation energy in PSII under stressful conditions. In addition, we demonstrate that in the absence of the flv4-2 operon-encoded proteins, about 20% of the phycobilisome antenna becomes detached from the reaction centers, thus decreasing light harvesting. Phycobilisome detachment is a consequence of a decreased relative content of PSII dimers, a feature observed in the absence of the Sll0218 protein. PMID:25704162

  16. Chlorophyll antenna proteins of photosystem I: topology, synthesis, and regulation of the 20-kDa subunit of Chlamydomonas light-harvesting complex of photosystem I

    SciTech Connect

    Herrin, D.L.; Plumley, F.G.; Ikeuchi, M.; Michaels, A.S.; Schmidt, G.W.

    1987-05-01

    The light-harvesting complex of photosystem I (LHCI) was isolated from wild-type cells of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii; the Chl a/b-protein complex contains four major polypeptides of approximately 27, 26, 24, and 20 kDa (polypeptides 14, 15, 17.2, and 22, respectively, in the nomenclature for Chlamydomonas thylakoid proteins). Antiserum against the 20-kDa subunit of LHCI was prepared and used to determine the membrane topology, subcellular site of synthesis, and cell-cycle regulation of this polypeptide. The results indicate that the 20-kDa subunit as well as the other major LHCI polypeptides are integral membrane proteins. Moreover, protease digestion experiments reveal that the 20-kDa polypeptide is completely protected by the membrane bilayer but the 27- and 26-kDa LHCI polypeptides are exposed at the membrane surface. In vivo synthesis of the 20-kDa polypeptide is sensitive to cycloheximide but not to chloramphenicol; the form of the polypeptide recovered from in vitro translations of polyadenylated RNA is approximately 24 kDa, 4 kDa larger than the mature polypeptide. It is concluded that this LHCI polypeptide is nuclear encoded and synthesized in the cytoplasm as a higher molecular weight precursor. Synthesis of the 20-kDa polypeptide is restricted to the light period in light-dark synchronized cells. Translatable mRNA for this polypeptide accumulates during the light but levels are dramatically reduced during the dark period. Thus, synthesis of the 20-kDa subunit of LHCI appears to be transcriptionally regulated during the cell cycle.

  17. Chlorophyll antenna proteins of photosystem I: topology, synthesis, and regulation of the 20-kDa subunit of Chlamydomonas light-harvesting complex of photosystem I.

    PubMed

    Herrin, D L; Plumley, F G; Ikeuchi, M; Michaels, A S; Schmidt, G W

    1987-05-01

    The light-harvesting complex of photosystem I (LHCI) was isolated from wild-type cells of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii; the Chl a/b-protein complex contains four major polypeptides of approximately 27, 26, 24, and 20 kDa (polypeptides 14, 15, 17.2, and 22, respectively, in the nomenclature for Chlamydomonas thylakoid proteins). Antiserum against the 20-kDa subunit of LHCI was prepared and used to determine the membrane topology, subcellular site of synthesis, and cell-cycle regulation of this polypeptide. The results indicate that the 20-kDa subunit as well as the other major LHCI polypeptides are integral membrane proteins. Moreover, protease digestion experiments reveal that the 20-kDa polypeptide is completely protected by the membrane bilayer but the 27- and 26-kDa LHCI polypeptides are exposed at the membrane surface. In vivo synthesis of the 20-kDa polypeptide is sensitive to cycloheximide but not to chloramphenicol; the form of the polypeptide recovered from in vitro translations of polyadenylated RNA is approximately 24 kDa, 4 kDa larger than the mature polypeptide. It is concluded that this LHCI polypeptide is nuclear encoded and synthesized in the cytoplasm as a higher molecular weight precursor. Synthesis of the 20-kDa polypeptide is restricted to the light period in light-dark synchronized cells. Translatable mRNA for this polypeptide accumulates during the light but levels are dramatically reduced during the dark period. Thus, synthesis of the 20-kDa subunit of LHCI appears to be transcriptionally regulated during the cell cycle. PMID:3555343

  18. Zeaxanthin Binds to Light-Harvesting Complex Stress-Related Protein to Enhance Nonphotochemical Quenching in Physcomitrella patens[W

    PubMed Central

    Pinnola, Alberta; Dall’Osto, Luca; Gerotto, Caterina; Morosinotto, Tomas; Bassi, Roberto; Alboresi, Alessandro

    2013-01-01

    Nonphotochemical quenching (NPQ) dissipates excess energy to protect the photosynthetic apparatus from excess light. The moss Physcomitrella patens exhibits strong NPQ by both algal-type light-harvesting complex stress-related (LHCSR)–dependent and plant-type S subunit of Photosystem II (PSBS)-dependent mechanisms. In this work, we studied the dependence of NPQ reactions on zeaxanthin, which is synthesized under light stress by violaxanthin deepoxidase (VDE) from preexisting violaxanthin. We produced vde knockout (KO) plants and showed they underwent a dramatic reduction in thermal dissipation ability and enhanced photoinhibition in excess light conditions. Multiple mutants (vde lhcsr KO and vde psbs KO) showed that zeaxanthin had a major influence on LHCSR-dependent NPQ, in contrast with previous reports in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. The PSBS-dependent component of quenching was less dependent on zeaxanthin, despite the near-complete violaxanthin to zeaxanthin exchange in LHC proteins. Consistent with this, we provide biochemical evidence that native LHCSR protein binds zeaxanthin upon excess light stress. These findings suggest that zeaxanthin played an important role in the adaptation of modern plants to the enhanced levels of oxygen and excess light intensity of land environments. PMID:24014548

  19. Zeaxanthin binds to light-harvesting complex stress-related protein to enhance nonphotochemical quenching in Physcomitrella patens.

    PubMed

    Pinnola, Alberta; Dall'Osto, Luca; Gerotto, Caterina; Morosinotto, Tomas; Bassi, Roberto; Alboresi, Alessandro

    2013-09-01

    Nonphotochemical quenching (NPQ) dissipates excess energy to protect the photosynthetic apparatus from excess light. The moss Physcomitrella patens exhibits strong NPQ by both algal-type light-harvesting complex stress-related (LHCSR)-dependent and plant-type S subunit of Photosystem II (PSBS)-dependent mechanisms. In this work, we studied the dependence of NPQ reactions on zeaxanthin, which is synthesized under light stress by violaxanthin deepoxidase (VDE) from preexisting violaxanthin. We produced vde knockout (KO) plants and showed they underwent a dramatic reduction in thermal dissipation ability and enhanced photoinhibition in excess light conditions. Multiple mutants (vde lhcsr KO and vde psbs KO) showed that zeaxanthin had a major influence on LHCSR-dependent NPQ, in contrast with previous reports in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. The PSBS-dependent component of quenching was less dependent on zeaxanthin, despite the near-complete violaxanthin to zeaxanthin exchange in LHC proteins. Consistent with this, we provide biochemical evidence that native LHCSR protein binds zeaxanthin upon excess light stress. These findings suggest that zeaxanthin played an important role in the adaptation of modern plants to the enhanced levels of oxygen and excess light intensity of land environments. PMID:24014548

  20. Protein Configuration Landscape Fluctuations Revealed by Exciton Transition Polarizations in Single Light Harvesting Complexes.

    PubMed

    Tubasum, Sumera; Torbjörnsson, Magne; Yadav, Dheerendra; Camacho, Rafael; Söderlind, Gustaf; Scheblykin, Ivan G; Pullerits, Tõnu

    2016-02-01

    Protein is a flexible material with broad distribution of conformations forming an energy landscape of quasi-stationary states. Disentangling the system dynamics along this landscape is the key for understanding the functioning of the protein. Here we studied a photosynthetic antenna pigment-protein complex LH2 with single molecule two-dimensional polarization imaging. Modeling based on the Redfield relaxation theory well describes the observed polarization properties of LH2 fluorescence and fluorescence excitation, strongly suggesting that at 77 K the conformational subspace of the LH2 is limited to about three configurations with relatively frequent switching among each other. At room temperature the next level of fluctuations determines the conformational dynamics. The results support the multitier model of the energy landscape of proteins and demonstrate the potential of the method for the studies of structural dynamics in proteins. PMID:26741912

  1. Structural Mechanism Underlying the Specific Recognition between the Arabidopsis State-Transition Phosphatase TAP38/PPH1 and Phosphorylated Light-Harvesting Complex Protein Lhcb1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Xuepeng; Guo, Jiangtao; Li, Mei; Liu, Zhenfeng

    2015-01-01

    During state transitions, plants regulate energy distribution between photosystems I and II through reversible phosphorylation and lateral migration of the major light-harvesting complex LHCII. Dephosphorylation of LHCII and the transition from state 2 to state 1 requires a thylakoid membrane-associated phosphatase named TAP38 or PPH1. TAP38/PPH1 specifically targets LHCII but not the core subunits of photosystem II, whereas the underlying molecular mechanism of their mutual recognition is currently unclear. Here, we present the structures of Arabidopsis thaliana TAP38/PPH1 in the substrate-free and substrate-bound states. The protein contains a type 2C serine/threonine protein phosphatase (PP2C) core domain, a Mn2+ (or Mg2+) binuclear center and two additional motifs contributing to substrate recognition. A 15-mer phosphorylated N-terminal peptide of Lhcb1 binds to TAP38/PPH1 on two surface clefts enclosed by the additional motifs. The first segment of the phosphopeptide is clamped by a pair of tooth-like arginine residues at Cleft 1 site. The binding adopts the lock-and-key mechanism with slight rearrangement of the substrate binding residues on TAP38/PPH1. Meanwhile, a more evident substrate-induced fitting occurs on Cleft 2 harboring the extended part of the phosphopeptide. The results unravel the bases for the specific recognition between TAP38/PPH1 and phosphorylated Lhcb1, a crucial step in state transitions. PMID:25888588

  2. Photoregulation of the Light-Harvesting Chlorophyll Protein Complex Associated with Photosystem II in Dunaliella tertiolecta1

    PubMed Central

    Mortain-Bertrand, Anne; Bennett, John; Falkowski, Paul G.

    1990-01-01

    The marine chlorophyte Dunaliella tertiolecta Butcher responds to a one-step transition from a high growth irradiance level (700 micromoles quanta per square meter per second) to a low growth irradiance level (70 micromoles quanta per square meter per second) by increasing the total amount of light-harvesting chlorophyll (Chl) a/b binding protein associated with photosystem II (LHC II), and by modifying the relative abundance of individual LHC II apoproteins. When high light-adapted cells were incubated with gabaculine, which inhibits Chl synthesis, and transferred to low light, the LHC II apoproteins were still synthesized and the 35S-labeled LHC II apoproteins remained stable after a 24 hour chase. These results suggest that Chl synthesis is not required for stability of the LHC II apoproteins in this alga. However, when the control cells are transferred from high light to low light, the amount of the four LHC II apoproteins per cell increases, whereas it does not in the presence of gabaculine. These results suggest that Chl synthesis is required for a photoadaptive increase in the cellular level of LHC II. Images Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure 7 PMID:16667702

  3. CP29, a monomeric light-harvesting complex II protein, is essential for state transitions in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii.

    PubMed

    Tokutsu, Ryutaro; Iwai, Masakazu; Minagawa, Jun

    2009-03-20

    In oxygen-evolving photosynthesis, the two photosystems, photosystem I (PSI) and photosystem II (PSII), function in parallel, and their excitation levels must be balanced to maintain an optimal photosynthetic rate under various light conditions. State transitions balance excitation energy between the two photosystems by redistributing light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) proteins. Here we describe two RNA interference (RNAi) mutants of the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii with one of the minor monomeric LHCII proteins, CP29 or CP26, knocked down. These two proteins have been identified in PSI-LHCI supercomplexes that harbor mobile LHCII proteins from PSII under a state where PSII is preferentially excited (State 2). We show that both the CP29 and CP26 RNAi mutants undergo reductions in the PSII antenna size during a transition from State 1 (a state where PSI is preferentially excited) to State 2, as reflected by nonphotochemical quenching of fluorescence, low temperature fluorescence spectra, and functional absorption cross-section. However, the undocked LHCIIs from PSII do not re-associate with PSI in the CP29-RNAi (b4i) mutant because the antenna size of PSI was not complementary increased. The mobile LHCIIs in the CP26-RNAi (b5i) mutant, however, re-associate with PSI, whose PSI-LHCI/II supercomplex is visualized on a sucrose density gradient. This study clarifies that CP29, not CP26, is an essential component in state transitions and demonstrates that CP29 is crucial when mobile LHCIIs re-associate with PSI under State 2 conditions. PMID:19144643

  4. Arabidopsis Mutants Deleted in the Light-Harvesting Protein Lhcb4 Have a Disrupted Photosystem II Macrostructure and Are Defective in Photoprotection[C][W

    PubMed Central

    de Bianchi, Silvia; Betterle, Nico; Kouril, Roman; Cazzaniga, Stefano; Boekema, Egbert; Bassi, Roberto; Dall’Osto, Luca

    2011-01-01

    The role of the light-harvesting complex Lhcb4 (CP29) in photosynthesis was investigated in Arabidopsis thaliana by characterizing knockout lines for each of the three Lhcb4 isoforms (Lhcb4.1/4.2/4.3). Plants lacking all isoforms (koLhcb4) showed a compensatory increase of Lhcb1 and a slightly reduced photosystem II/I ratio with respect to the wild type. The absence of Lhcb4 did not result in alteration in electron transport rates. However, the kinetic of state transition was faster in the mutant, and nonphotochemical quenching activity was lower in koLhcb4 plants with respect to either wild type or mutants retaining a single Lhcb4 isoform. KoLhcb4 plants were more sensitive to photoinhibition, while this effect was not observed in knockout lines for any other photosystem II antenna subunit. Ultrastructural analysis of thylakoid grana membranes showed a lower density of photosystem II complexes in koLhcb4. Moreover, analysis of isolated supercomplexes showed a different overall shape of the C2S2 particles due to a different binding mode of the S-trimer to the core complex. An empty space was observed within the photosystem II supercomplex at the Lhcb4 position, implying that the missing Lhcb4 was not replaced by other Lhc subunits. This suggests that Lhcb4 is unique among photosystem II antenna proteins and determinant for photosystem II macro-organization and photoprotection. PMID:21803939

  5. Arabidopsis mutants deleted in the light-harvesting protein Lhcb4 have a disrupted photosystem II macrostructure and are defective in photoprotection.

    PubMed

    de Bianchi, Silvia; Betterle, Nico; Kouril, Roman; Cazzaniga, Stefano; Boekema, Egbert; Bassi, Roberto; Dall'Osto, Luca

    2011-07-01

    The role of the light-harvesting complex Lhcb4 (CP29) in photosynthesis was investigated in Arabidopsis thaliana by characterizing knockout lines for each of the three Lhcb4 isoforms (Lhcb4.1/4.2/4.3). Plants lacking all isoforms (koLhcb4) showed a compensatory increase of Lhcb1 and a slightly reduced photosystem II/I ratio with respect to the wild type. The absence of Lhcb4 did not result in alteration in electron transport rates. However, the kinetic of state transition was faster in the mutant, and nonphotochemical quenching activity was lower in koLhcb4 plants with respect to either wild type or mutants retaining a single Lhcb4 isoform. KoLhcb4 plants were more sensitive to photoinhibition, while this effect was not observed in knockout lines for any other photosystem II antenna subunit. Ultrastructural analysis of thylakoid grana membranes showed a lower density of photosystem II complexes in koLhcb4. Moreover, analysis of isolated supercomplexes showed a different overall shape of the C₂S₂ particles due to a different binding mode of the S-trimer to the core complex. An empty space was observed within the photosystem II supercomplex at the Lhcb4 position, implying that the missing Lhcb4 was not replaced by other Lhc subunits. This suggests that Lhcb4 is unique among photosystem II antenna proteins and determinant for photosystem II macro-organization and photoprotection. PMID:21803939

  6. Cytokinins modulate the expression of genes encoding the protein of the light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b complex.

    PubMed

    de la Serve, B T; Axelos, M; Péaud-Lenoël, C

    1985-05-01

    Tobacco cell suspension cultures responded to cytokinins (for instance kinetin) by full chloroplast differentiation. The hormone had the effect of stimulating the appearance of a few prominent plastid proteins. Synthesis of the light-harvesting chlorophyl a/b-binding protein (LHCP) in response to kinetin was noteworthy (Axelos M. et al.: Plant Sci Lett 33:201-212, 1984).Poly(A)(+)RNAs were prepared from cells grown in the presence of or without added kinetin. Poly(A)(+)RNA recovery and translation activity were not quantitatively altered by the hormone treatment. In vitro translation of polyadenylated mRNA into precursor polypeptides of LHCP (pLHCP) was quantified by immunoprecipitation and SDS-PAGE fractionation of pLHCP immunoprecipitates: pLHCP-mRNA translating activity was found to be stimulated in parallel to mature LHCP accumulation by kinetin-induced cells.Dot-blot and northern-blot hybridizations of poly(A)(+)RNA were carried out, using as a probe a pea LHCP-cDNA clone (Broglie R. et al.: Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 78: 7304-7308, 1981). A ten-fold increase of the level of pLHCP-encoding sequences was observed in poly(A)(+)RNA prepared from 9-d kinetin-stimulated cells, compared to control cells. Oligo(dT)-cellulose-excluded RNA fractions exhibited very low hybridization levels, in the same ratios as those obtained with poly(A)(+)RNA.Thus, the expression of LHCP-gene activity, in response to kinetin addition to tobacco cell suspension cultures, is regulated by the level of pLHCP-encoding mRNA rather than by translational or post-translational controls. re]19850218 rv]19850605 ac]19850613. PMID:24306651

  7. NAB1 Is an RNA Binding Protein Involved in the Light-Regulated Differential Expression of the Light-Harvesting Antenna of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii

    PubMed Central

    Mussgnug, Jan H.; Wobbe, Lutz; Elles, Ingolf; Claus, Christina; Hamilton, Mary; Fink, Andreas; Kahmann, Uwe; Kapazoglou, Aliki; Mullineaux, Conrad W.; Hippler, Michael; Nickelsen, Jörg; Nixon, Peter J.; Kruse, Olaf

    2005-01-01

    Photosynthetic organisms respond to changes in ambient light by modulating the size and composition of their light-harvesting complexes, which in the case of the green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii consists of >15 members of a large extended family of chlorophyll binding subunits. How their expression is coordinated is unclear. Here, we describe the analysis of an insertion mutant, state transitions mutant3 (stm3), which we show has increased levels of LHCBM subunits associated with the light-harvesting antenna of photosystem II. The mutated nuclear gene in stm3 encodes the RNA binding protein NAB1 (for putative nucleic acid binding protein). In vitro and in vivo RNA binding and protein expression studies have confirmed that NAB1 differentially binds to LHCBM mRNA in a subpolysomal high molecular weight RNA–protein complex. Binding of NAB1 stabilizes LHCBM mRNA at the preinitiation level via sequestration and thereby represses translation. The specificity and affinity of binding are determined by an RNA sequence motif similar to that used by the Xenopus laevis translation repressor FRGY2, which is conserved to varying degrees in the LHCBM gene family. We conclude from our results that NAB1 plays an important role in controlling the expression of the light-harvesting antenna of photosystem II at the posttranscriptional level. The similarity of NAB1 and FRGY2 of Xenopus implies the existence of similar RNA-masking systems in animals and plants. PMID:16284312

  8. Heterologous expression of moss light-harvesting complex stress-related 1 (LHCSR1), the chlorophyll a-xanthophyll pigment-protein complex catalyzing non-photochemical quenching, in Nicotiana sp.

    PubMed

    Pinnola, Alberta; Ghin, Leonardo; Gecchele, Elisa; Merlin, Matilde; Alboresi, Alessandro; Avesani, Linda; Pezzotti, Mario; Capaldi, Stefano; Cazzaniga, Stefano; Bassi, Roberto

    2015-10-01

    Oxygenic photosynthetic organisms evolved mechanisms for thermal dissipation of energy absorbed in excess to prevent formation of reactive oxygen species. The major and fastest component, called non-photochemical quenching, occurs within the photosystem II antenna system by the action of two essential light-harvesting complex (LHC)-like proteins, photosystem II subunit S (PSBS) in plants and light-harvesting complex stress-related (LHCSR) in green algae and diatoms. In the evolutionary intermediate Physcomitrella patens, a moss, both gene products are active. These proteins, which are present in low amounts, are difficult to purify, preventing structural and functional analysis. Here, we report on the overexpression of the LHCSR1 protein from P. patens in the heterologous systems Nicotiana benthamiana and Nicotiana tabacum using transient and stable nuclear transformation. We show that the protein accumulated in both heterologous systems is in its mature form, localizes in the chloroplast thylakoid membranes, and is correctly folded with chlorophyll a and xanthophylls but without chlorophyll b, an essential chromophore for plants and algal LHC proteins. Finally, we show that recombinant LHCSR1 is active in quenching in vivo, implying that the recombinant protein obtained is a good material for future structural and functional studies. PMID:26260788

  9. Light Harvesting and White-Light Generation in a Composite of Carbon Dots and Dye-Encapsulated BSA-Protein-Capped Gold Nanoclusters.

    PubMed

    Barman, Monoj Kumar; Paramanik, Bipattaran; Bain, Dipankar; Patra, Amitava

    2016-08-01

    Several strategies have been adopted to design an artificial light-harvesting system in which light energy is captured by peripheral chromophores and it is subsequently transferred to the core via energy transfer. A composite of carbon dots and dye-encapsulated BSA-protein-capped gold nanoclusters (AuNCs) has been developed for efficient light harvesting and white light generation. Carbon dots (C-dots) act as donor and AuNCs capped with BSA protein act as acceptor. Analysis reveals that energy transfer increases from 63 % to 83 % in presence of coumarin dye (C153), which enhances the cascade energy transfer from carbon dots to AuNCs. Bright white light emission with a quantum yield of 19 % under the 375 nm excitation wavelength is achieved by changing the ratio of components. Interesting findings reveal that the efficient energy transfer in carbon-dot-metal-cluster nanocomposites may open up new possibilities in designing artificial light harvesting systems for future applications. PMID:27383453

  10. Absence of the major light-harvesting antenna proteins alters the redox properties of photosystem II reaction centres in the chlorina F2 mutant of barley.

    PubMed

    Krol, Marianna; Ivanov, Alexander G; Booij-James, Isabelle; Mattoo, Autar K; Sane, P V; Hüner, Norman P A

    2009-08-01

    Although the chlorina F2 mutant of barley specifically exhibits reduced levels of the major light-harvesting polypeptides associated with photosystem II (PSII), thermoluminescence measurements of photosystem reaction centre photochemistry revealed that S2/S3QB- charge recombinations were shifted to lower temperatures, while the characteristic peak of S2QA- charge recombinations was shifted to higher temperatures compared with wild-type (WT) barley. Thus, we show that the absence of the major light-harvesting polypeptides affects the redox properties of PSII reaction centres. Radiolabeling studies in vivo and in vitro with [32P]orthophosphate or [gamma-32P]ATP, respectively, demonstrated that the D1 PSII reaction centre polypeptide is phosphorylated in both the WT and the F2 mutant. In contrast with the radiolabeling results, phosphorylation of D1 and other PSII proteins, although detected in WT barley, was ambiguous in the F2 mutant when the phosphothreonine antibody method of detection was used. Thus, caution must be exercised in the use of commercially available phosphothreonine antibodies to estimate thylakoid polypeptide phosphorylation. Furthermore, in membrano, the D1 polypeptide of the F2 mutant was less susceptible to trypsin treatment than that of WT barley. The role of the light-harvesting complex in modulating the structure and function of the D1 polypeptide of PSII reaction centers is discussed. PMID:19767820

  11. The P-700-chlorophyl alpha-protein complex and two major light-harvesting complexes of Acrocarpia paniculata and other brown seaweeds.

    PubMed

    Barrett, J; Anderson, J M

    1980-05-01

    Acrocarpia paniculata thylakoids were fragmented with Triton X-100 and the pigment-protein complexes so released were isolated by sucrose density gradient centrifugation. Three main chlorophyll-carotenoid-protein complexes with distinct pigment compositions were isolated. (1) A P-700-chlorophyll a-protein complex, with a ratio of 1 P-700: 38 chlorophyll a: 4 beta-carotene molecules, had similar absorption and fluorescence characteristics to the chlorophyll-protein complex 1 isolated with Triton X-100 from higher plants, green algae and Ecklonia radiata. (2) an orange-brown complex had a chlorophyll a : c2 : fucoxanthin molar ratio of 2 : 1 : 2. this complex had no chlorophyll c1 and contained most of the fucoxanthin present in the chloroplasts. This pigment complex is postulated to be the main light-harvesting complex of brown seaweeds. (3) A green complex had a chlorophyll a : c1 : c2 : violaxanthin molar ratio of 8 : 1 : 1. This also is a light-harvesting complex. the absorption and fluorescence spectral characteristics and other physical properties were consistent with the pigments of these three major complexes being bound to protein. Differential extraction of brown algal thylakoids with Triton X-100 showed that a chlorophyll c2-fucoxanthin-protein complex was a minor pigment complex of these thylakoids. PMID:7378391

  12. Light-harvesting dendrimers.

    PubMed

    Balzani, Vincenzo; Ceroni, Paola; Maestri, Mauro; Vicinelli, Veronica

    2003-12-01

    Dendrimers are well-defined, tree-like macromolecules, with a high degree of order and the possibility to contain selected chemical units in predetermined sites of their structure. Dendrimers are currently attracting the interest of many scientists because of their unusual chemical and physical properties and the wide range of potential applications. It is possible to design and synthesize dendrimers containing a variety of chromophoric groups organized in the dimensions of time, energy and space so as to obtain efficient light-harvesting devices that can be useful for solar energy conversion and other purposes. PMID:14644173

  13. In Vitro Self-Assembly of the Light Harvesting Pigment-Protein LH2 Revealed by Ultrafast Spectroscopy and Electron Microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Schubert, Axel; Stenstam, Anna; Beenken, Wichard J. D.; Herek, Jennifer L.; Cogdell, Richard; Pullerits, Tõnu; Sundström, Villy

    2004-01-01

    Controlled ensemble formation of protein-surfactant systems provides a fundamental concept for the realization of nanoscale devices with self-organizing capability. In this context, spectroscopic monitoring of pigment-containing proteins yields detailed structural information. Here we have studied the association behavior of the bacterial light-harvesting protein LH2 from Rhodobacter spheroides in an n,n-dimethyldodecylamine-n-oxide/water environment. Time-resolved studies of the excitation annihilation yielded information about aggregate sizes and packing of the protein complexes therein. The results are compared to transmission electron microscopy images of instantaneously frozen samples. Our data indicate the manifestation of different phases, which are discussed with respect to the thermodynamic equilibrium in ternary protein-surfactant-water systems. Accordingly, by varying the concentration the formation of different types of aggregates can be controlled. Conditions for the appearance of isolated LH2 complexes are defined. PMID:15041674

  14. Normal Mode Analysis of the Spectral Density of the Fenna–Matthews–Olson Light-Harvesting Protein: How the Protein Dissipates the Excess Energy of Excitons

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    We report a method for the structure-based calculation of the spectral density of the pigment–protein coupling in light-harvesting complexes that combines normal-mode analysis with the charge density coupling (CDC) and transition charge from electrostatic potential (TrEsp) methods for the computation of site energies and excitonic couplings, respectively. The method is applied to the Fenna–Matthews–Olson (FMO) protein in order to investigate the influence of the different parts of the spectral density as well as correlations among these contributions on the energy transfer dynamics and on the temperature-dependent decay of coherences. The fluctuations and correlations in excitonic couplings as well as the correlations between coupling and site energy fluctuations are found to be 1 order of magnitude smaller in amplitude than the site energy fluctuations. Despite considerable amplitudes of that part of the spectral density which contains correlations in site energy fluctuations, the effect of these correlations on the exciton population dynamics and dephasing of coherences is negligible. The inhomogeneous charge distribution of the protein, which causes variations in local pigment–protein coupling constants of the normal modes, is responsible for this effect. It is seen thereby that the same building principle that is used by nature to create an excitation energy funnel in the FMO protein also allows for efficient dissipation of the excitons’ excess energy. PMID:23163520

  15. Proteomics of light-harvesting proteins in different plant species. Analysis and comparison by liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization mass spectrometry. Photosystem II.

    PubMed

    Zolla, Lello; Timperio, Anna-Maria; Walcher, Wolfgang; Huber, Christian G

    2003-01-01

    An overview of the intact molecular masses and the hydrophobic properties of the photosystem II (PSII) light-harvesting proteins in 14 different plant species is presented. The protein separation and identification was achieved by means of reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry. The good correspondence of the molecular masses measured by reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry with those deduced from the DNA sequence (0.008%-0.016% relative deviation in Arabidopsis) enabled the identification of the different protein types. Utilizing this correlation, it was possible in several cases to spot a gene product for the previously cloned genes. In PSII, all antenna proteins show hydrophobic properties considerably different within the same as well as among various species, in contrast to observations made previously with PSI. These differences might reflect a tuning of protein-protein interactions that play a role in inducing different supramolecular organizations of PSII: within the same species as a consequence of short-term adaptations, and among species for seasonal species adaptation. The relative antenna stoichiometry was readily established on the basis of relative peak areas of the separated proteins in the ultraviolet chromatograms. The correspondence found between the high copy number of genes with the gene products reveals that the genes are not silent in their protein expression. Moreover, the high copy number of gene products as well as protein heterogeneity observed in PSII suggest a possible plant strategy to realize the high degree of organization and interconnection of the light-harvesting systems under any environmental conditions. PMID:12529528

  16. The chlorosome: a prototype for efficient light harvesting in photosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Oostergetel, Gert T; van Amerongen, Herbert; Boekema, Egbert J

    2010-06-01

    Three phyla of bacteria include phototrophs that contain unique antenna systems, chlorosomes, as the principal light-harvesting apparatus. Chlorosomes are the largest known supramolecular antenna systems and contain hundreds of thousands of BChl c/d/e molecules enclosed by a single membrane leaflet and a baseplate. The BChl pigments are organized via self-assembly and do not require proteins to provide a scaffold for efficient light harvesting. Their excitation energy flows via a small protein, CsmA embedded in the baseplate to the photosynthetic reaction centres. Chlorosomes allow for photosynthesis at very low light intensities by ultra-rapid transfer of excitations to reaction centres and enable organisms with chlorosomes to live at extraordinarily low light intensities under which no other phototrophic organisms can grow. This article reviews several aspects of chlorosomes: the supramolecular and molecular organizations and the light-harvesting and spectroscopic properties. In addition, it provides some novel information about the organization of the baseplate. PMID:20130996

  17. The chlorosome: a prototype for efficient light harvesting in photosynthesis

    PubMed Central

    Oostergetel, Gert T.; van Amerongen, Herbert

    2010-01-01

    Three phyla of bacteria include phototrophs that contain unique antenna systems, chlorosomes, as the principal light-harvesting apparatus. Chlorosomes are the largest known supramolecular antenna systems and contain hundreds of thousands of BChl c/d/e molecules enclosed by a single membrane leaflet and a baseplate. The BChl pigments are organized via self-assembly and do not require proteins to provide a scaffold for efficient light harvesting. Their excitation energy flows via a small protein, CsmA embedded in the baseplate to the photosynthetic reaction centres. Chlorosomes allow for photosynthesis at very low light intensities by ultra-rapid transfer of excitations to reaction centres and enable organisms with chlorosomes to live at extraordinarily low light intensities under which no other phototrophic organisms can grow. This article reviews several aspects of chlorosomes: the supramolecular and molecular organizations and the light-harvesting and spectroscopic properties. In addition, it provides some novel information about the organization of the baseplate. PMID:20130996

  18. PS2013 Satellite Workshop on Photosynthetic Light-Harvesting Systems

    SciTech Connect

    Niederman, Robert A.; Blankenship, Robert E.; Frank, Harry A.

    2015-02-07

    These funds were used for partial support of the PS2013 Satellite Workshop on Photosynthetic Light-Harvesting Systems, that was held on 8-11 August, 2013, at Washington University, St. Louis, MO. This conference, held in conjunction with the 16th International Congress on Photosynthesis/St. Louis, continued a long tradition of light-harvesting satellite conferences that have been held prior to the previous six international photosynthesis congresses. In this Workshop, the basis was explored for the current interest in replacing fossil fuels with energy sources derived form direct solar radiation, coupled with light-driven electron transport in natural photosynthetic systems and how they offer a valuable blueprint for conversion of sunlight to useful energy forms. This was accomplished through sessions on the initial light-harvesting events in the biological conversion of solar energy to chemically stored energy forms, and how these natural photosynthetic processes serve as a guide to the development of robust bio-hybrid and artificial systems for solar energy conversion into both electricity or chemical fuels. Organized similar to a Gordon Research Conference, a lively, informal and collegial setting was established, highlighting the exchange of exciting new data and unpublished results from ongoing studies. A significant amount of time was set aside for open discussion and interactive poster sessions, with a special session devoted to oral presentations by talented students and postdoctoral fellows judged to have the best posters. This area of research has seen exceptionally rapid progress in recent years, with the availability of a number of antenna protein structures at atomic resolution, elucidation of the molecular surface architecture of native photosynthetic membranes by atomic force microscopy and the maturing of ultrafast spectroscopic and molecular biological techniques for the investigation and manipulation of photosynthetic systems. The conferees

  19. Steady-state phosphorylation of light-harvesting complex II proteins preserves photosystem I under fluctuating white light.

    PubMed

    Grieco, Michele; Tikkanen, Mikko; Paakkarinen, Virpi; Kangasjärvi, Saijaliisa; Aro, Eva-Mari

    2012-12-01

    According to the "state transitions" theory, the light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) phosphorylation in plant chloroplasts is essential to adjust the relative absorption cross section of photosystem II (PSII) and PSI upon changes in light quality. The role of LHCII phosphorylation upon changes in light intensity is less thoroughly investigated, particularly when changes in light intensity are too fast to allow the phosphorylation/dephosphorylation processes to occur. Here, we demonstrate that the Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) stn7 (for state transition7) mutant, devoid of the STN7 kinase and LHCII phosphorylation, shows a growth penalty only under fluctuating white light due to a low amount of PSI. Under constant growth light conditions, stn7 acquires chloroplast redox homeostasis by increasing the relative amount of PSI centers. Thus, in plant chloroplasts, the steady-state LHCII phosphorylation plays a major role in preserving PSI upon rapid fluctuations in white light intensity. Such protection of PSI results from LHCII phosphorylation-dependent equal distribution of excitation energy to both PSII and PSI from the shared LHCII antenna and occurs in cooperation with nonphotochemical quenching and the proton gradient regulation5-dependent control of electron flow, which are likewise strictly regulated by white light intensity. LHCII phosphorylation is concluded to function both as a stabilizer (in time scales of seconds to minutes) and a dynamic regulator (in time scales from tens of minutes to hours and days) of redox homeostasis in chloroplasts, subject to modifications by both environmental and metabolic cues. Exceeding the capacity of LHCII phosphorylation/dephosphorylation to balance the distribution of excitation energy between PSII and PSI results in readjustment of photosystem stoichiometry. PMID:23033142

  20. Identification of light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b-binding protein genes of Zostera marina L. and their expression under different environmental conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kong, Fanna; Zhou, Yang; Sun, Peipei; Cao, Min; Li, Hong; Mao, Yunxiang

    2016-02-01

    Photosynthesis includes the collection of light and the transfer of solar energy using light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b-binding (LHC) proteins. In high plants, the LHC gene family includes LHCA and LHCB sub-families, which encode proteins constituting the light-harvesting complex of photosystems I and II. Zostera marina L. is a monocotyledonous angiosperm and inhabits submerged marine environments rather than land environments. We characterized the Lhca and Lhcb gene families of Z. marina from the expressed sequence tags (EST) database. In total, 13 unigenes were annotated as ZmLhc, 6 in Lhca family and 7 in ZmLhcb family. ZmLHCA and ZmLHCB contained the conservative LHC motifs and amino acid residues binding chlorophyll. The average similarity among mature ZmLHCA and ZmLHCB was 48.91% and 48.66%, respectively, which indicated a high degree of divergence within ZmLHChc gene family. The reconstructed phylogenetic tree showed that the tree topology and phylogenetic relationship were similar to those reported in other high plants, suggesting that the Lhc genes were highly conservative and the classification of ZmLhc genes was consistent with the evolutionary position of Z. marina. Real-time reverse transcription (RT) PCR analysis showed that different members of ZmLhca and ZmLhcb responded to a stress in different expression patterns. Salinity, temperature, light intensity and light quality may affect the expression of most ZmLhca and ZmLhcb genes. Inorganic carbon concentration and acidity had no obvious effect on ZmLhca and ZmLhcb gene expression, except for ZmLhca6.

  1. Evolutionary loss of light-harvesting proteins Lhcb6 and Lhcb3 in major land plant groups - break-up of current dogma.

    PubMed

    Kouřil, Roman; Nosek, Lukáš; Bartoš, Jan; Boekema, Egbert J; Ilík, Petr

    2016-05-01

    Photosynthesis in plants and algae relies on the coordinated function of photosystems (PS) I and II. Their efficiency is augmented by finely-tuned light-harvesting proteins (Lhcs) connected to them. The most recent Lhcs (in evolutionary terms), Lhcb6 and Lhcb3, evolved during the transition of plants from water to land and have so far been considered to be an essential characteristic of land plants. We used single particle electron microscopy and sequence analysis to study architecture and composition of PSII supercomplex from Norway spruce and related species. We have found that there are major land plant families that lack functional lhcb6 and lhcb3 genes, which notably changes the organization of PSII supercomplexes. The Lhcb6 and Lhcb3 proteins have been lost in the gymnosperm genera Picea and Pinus (family Pinaceae) and Gnetum (Gnetales). We also revealed that the absence of these proteins in Norway spruce modifies the PSII supercomplex in such a way that it resembles its counterpart in the alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, an evolutionarily older organism. Our results break a deep-rooted concept of Lhcb6 and Lhcb3 proteins being the essential characteristic of land plants, and beg the question of what the evolutionary benefit of their loss could be. PMID:27001142

  2. Identification of pH-sensing Sites in the Light Harvesting Complex Stress-related 3 Protein Essential for Triggering Non-photochemical Quenching in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii.

    PubMed

    Ballottari, Matteo; Truong, Thuy B; De Re, Eleonora; Erickson, Erika; Stella, Giulio R; Fleming, Graham R; Bassi, Roberto; Niyogi, Krishna K

    2016-04-01

    Light harvesting complex stress-related 3 (LHCSR3) is the protein essential for photoprotective excess energy dissipation (non-photochemical quenching, NPQ) in the model green algaChlamydomonas reinhardtii Activation of NPQ requires low pH in the thylakoid lumen, which is induced in excess light conditions and sensed by lumen-exposed acidic residues. In this work we have used site-specific mutagenesisin vivoandin vitrofor identification of the residues in LHCSR3 that are responsible for sensing lumen pH. Lumen-exposed protonatable residues, aspartate and glutamate, were mutated to asparagine and glutamine, respectively. By expression in a mutant lacking all LHCSR isoforms, residues Asp(117), Glu(221), and Glu(224)were shown to be essential for LHCSR3-dependent NPQ induction inC. reinhardtii Analysis of recombinant proteins carrying the same mutations refoldedin vitrowith pigments showed that the capacity of responding to low pH by decreasing the fluorescence lifetime, present in the wild-type protein, was lost. Consistent with a role in pH sensing, the mutations led to a substantial reduction in binding the NPQ inhibitor dicyclohexylcarbodiimide. PMID:26817847

  3. Identification of pH-sensing Sites in the Light Harvesting Complex Stress-related 3 Protein Essential for Triggering Non-photochemical Quenching in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii*

    PubMed Central

    Ballottari, Matteo; Truong, Thuy B.; De Re, Eleonora; Erickson, Erika; Stella, Giulio R.; Fleming, Graham R.; Bassi, Roberto; Niyogi, Krishna K.

    2016-01-01

    Light harvesting complex stress-related 3 (LHCSR3) is the protein essential for photoprotective excess energy dissipation (non-photochemical quenching, NPQ) in the model green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Activation of NPQ requires low pH in the thylakoid lumen, which is induced in excess light conditions and sensed by lumen-exposed acidic residues. In this work we have used site-specific mutagenesis in vivo and in vitro for identification of the residues in LHCSR3 that are responsible for sensing lumen pH. Lumen-exposed protonatable residues, aspartate and glutamate, were mutated to asparagine and glutamine, respectively. By expression in a mutant lacking all LHCSR isoforms, residues Asp117, Glu221, and Glu224 were shown to be essential for LHCSR3-dependent NPQ induction in C. reinhardtii. Analysis of recombinant proteins carrying the same mutations refolded in vitro with pigments showed that the capacity of responding to low pH by decreasing the fluorescence lifetime, present in the wild-type protein, was lost. Consistent with a role in pH sensing, the mutations led to a substantial reduction in binding the NPQ inhibitor dicyclohexylcarbodiimide. PMID:26817847

  4. Chloramphenicol Stimulates the Accumulation of Light-Harvesting Chlorophyll a/b Protein II by Affecting Posttranscriptional Events in the Chlorina CD3 Mutant Wheat 1

    PubMed Central

    Mogen, Kim; Eide, John; Duysen, Murray; Eskins, Ken

    1990-01-01

    The levels of total chlorophyll (Chl), total carotenoids, light-harvesting Chl a/b apoprotein of photosystem II (LHCPII), and light-harvesting Chl a/b apoprotein (LHCP) mRNA were examined in the CD3 chlorina mutant wheat (Triticum aestivum, L.) after 18 hours greening at either a low (3 micromoles of photons per square meter per second) or moderate (200 micromoles of photons per square meter per second) irradiance. The Chl b and LHCPII deficient mutant wheat accumulated significantly greater levels of Chl and LHCPII when greened under low irradiance than when greened under a moderate irradiance level. The level of LHCP mRNA, as measured by dot-blot and Northern hybridization analyses to a cDNA probe, increased in response to the irradiance level in the wheat. Applications of chloramphenicol (CAP) to the mutant wheat increased total Chl, Chl b, and LHCPII accumulations at both irradiance levels. Even though the CAP-treated CD3 mutant wheat accumulated similar levels of plastid pigments as those of CAP-treated wild type, the LHCPII amounts were much higher in the wild type than in the CD3 mutant of wheat. CAP treatment did not significantly increase the LHCP mRNA level in either wheat. Applications of either benzyladenine or CAP to the mutant, greened under the moderate irradiance level for 72 hours, increased all plastid pigment levels except for β-carotene. The benzyladenine plus CAP combination treatment had little effect on the LHCPII levels in the wild-type wheat. The combination treatment increased the LHCPII accumulation in the CD3 mutant of wheat by about twice that of the untreated mutant. Excess LHC pigment accumulation was promoted in each wheat line. We conclude that the regulation of LHCPII in the CD3 mutant of wheat is controlled by a posttranscriptional event. Furthermore, the accumulation of LHC bound pigments is not coupled with the accumulation of LHCPII in wheat thylakoid membranes. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 PMID:16667395

  5. Controlling Light Harvesting with Light.

    PubMed

    Gwizdala, Michal; Berera, Rudi; Kirilovsky, Diana; van Grondelle, Rienk; Krüger, Tjaart P J

    2016-09-14

    When exposed to intense sunlight, all organisms performing oxygenic photosynthesis implement various photoprotective strategies to prevent potentially lethal photodamage. The rapidly responding photoprotective mechanisms, occurring in the light-harvesting pigment-protein antennae, take effect within tens of seconds, while the dramatic and potentially harmful light intensity fluctuations manifest also on shorter time scales. Here we show that, upon illumination, individual phycobilisomes from Synechocystis PCC 6803, which, in vivo under low-light conditions, harvest solar energy, and have the built-in capacity to switch rapidly and reversibly into light-activated energy-dissipating states. Simultaneously measured fluorescence intensity, lifetime, and spectra, compared with a multicompartmental kinetic model, revealed that essentially any subunit of a phycobilisome can be quenched, and that the core complexes were targeted most frequently. Our results provide the first evidence for fluorescence blinking from a biologically active system at physiological light intensities and suggest that the light-controlled switches to intrinsically available energy-dissipating states are responsible for a novel type of photoprotection in cyanobacteria. We anticipate other photosynthetic organisms to employ similar strategies to respond instantly to rapid solar light intensity fluctuations. A detailed understanding of the photophysics of photosynthetic antenna complexes is of great interest for bioinspired solar energy technologies. PMID:27546794

  6. Spectroscopic Investigations of the Photophysics of Cryptophyte Light-Harvesting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dinshaw, Rayomond

    The biological significance of photosynthesis is indisputable as it is necessary for nearly all life on earth. Photosynthesis provides chemical energy for plants, algae, and bacteria, while heterotrophic organisms rely on these species as their ultimate food source. The initial step in photosynthesis requires the absorption of sunlight to create electronic excitations. Light-harvesting proteins play the functional role of capturing solar radiation and transferring the resulting excitation to the reaction centers where it is used to carry out the chemical reactions of photosynthesis. Despite the wide variety of light-harvesting protein structures and arrangements, most light-harvesting proteins are able to utilize the captured solar energy for charge separation with near perfect quantum efficiency.1 This thesis will focus on understanding the energy transfer dynamics and photophysics of a specific subset of light-harvesting antennae known as phycobiliproteins. These proteins are extracted from cryptophyte algae and are investigated using steady-state and ultrafast spectroscopic techniques.

  7. Euglena light-harvesting chlorophyll A/B binding protein (LHCP) synthesized as an unusually large precursor

    SciTech Connect

    Rikin, A.; Meyer, A.; Schwartzbach, S.

    1987-04-01

    Light increased the rate of LHCP synthesis as measured by pulse-labeling with /sup 35/SO/sub 4/ and immunoprecipitation with antibody specific for Euglena LHCP. In addition to the mature LHCP, 26,000 daltons, the LHCP specific antibody immunoprecipitated large amounts of several proteins having molecular weights of approximately 100,000. On immunoblots of immunoprecipitated unlabeled protein, the antibody only detected the mature LHCP suggesting that the high molecular weight proteins are not LHCP aggregates produced during immunoprecipitation. After a 10 min pulse with /sup 35/SO/sub 4/, the 100,000 dalton proteins constituted over 80% of the immunoprecipitated material. In a subsequent chase, the radioactivity in the 100,000 dalton proteins decreased and the radioactivity in the mature LHCP increased suggesting a precursor-product relationship. After a 35 minute chase, the mature LHCP was the major radioactive protein immunoprecipitated. Peptide mapping and in vitro translation are being used to clarify the structural and functional relationships, if any, between the 100,000 and 26,000 dalton immunoprecipitation products.

  8. Plants Actively Avoid State Transitions upon Changes in Light Intensity: Role of Light-Harvesting Complex II Protein Dephosphorylation in High Light1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Suorsa, Marjaana; Rantala, Marjaana; Aro, Eva-Mari

    2015-01-01

    Photosystem II (PSII) core and light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) proteins in plant chloroplasts undergo reversible phosphorylation upon changes in light intensity (being under control of redox-regulated STN7 and STN8 kinases and TAP38/PPH1 and PSII core phosphatases). Shift of plants from growth light to high light results in an increase of PSII core phosphorylation, whereas LHCII phosphorylation concomitantly decreases. Exactly the opposite takes place when plants are shifted to lower light intensity. Despite distinct changes occurring in thylakoid protein phosphorylation upon light intensity changes, the excitation balance between PSII and photosystem I remains unchanged. This differs drastically from the canonical-state transition model induced by artificial states 1 and 2 lights that concomitantly either dephosphorylate or phosphorylate, respectively, both the PSII core and LHCII phosphoproteins. Analysis of the kinase and phosphatase mutants revealed that TAP38/PPH1 phosphatase is crucial in preventing state transition upon increase in light intensity. Indeed, tap38/pph1 mutant revealed strong concomitant phosphorylation of both the PSII core and LHCII proteins upon transfer to high light, thus resembling the wild type under state 2 light. Coordinated function of thylakoid protein kinases and phosphatases is shown to secure balanced excitation energy for both photosystems by preventing state transitions upon changes in light intensity. Moreover, PROTON GRADIENT REGULATION5 (PGR5) is required for proper regulation of thylakoid protein kinases and phosphatases, and the pgr5 mutant mimics phenotypes of tap38/pph1. This shows that there is a close cooperation between the redox- and proton gradient-dependent regulatory mechanisms for proper function of the photosynthetic machinery. PMID:25902812

  9. Transcriptional Control of Expression of Genes for Photosynthetic Reaction Center and Light-Harvesting Proteins in the Purple Bacterium Rhodovulum sulfidophilum

    PubMed Central

    Masuda, Shinji; Nagashima, Kenji V. P.; Shimada, Keizo; Matsuura, Katsumi

    2000-01-01

    The purple photosynthetic bacterium Rhodovulum sulfidophilum synthesizes photosynthetic apparatus even under highly aerated conditions in the dark. To understand the oxygen-independent expression of photosynthetic genes, the expression of the puf operon coding for the light-harvesting 1 and reaction center proteins was analyzed. Northern blot hybridization analysis showed that puf mRNA synthesis was not significantly repressed by oxygen in this bacterium. High-resolution 5′ mapping of the puf mRNA transcriptional initiation sites and DNA sequence analysis of the puf upstream regulatory region indicated that there are three possible promoters for the puf operon expression, two of which have a high degree of sequence similarity with those of Rhodobacter capsulatus, which shows a high level of oxygen repression of photosystem synthesis. Deletion analysis showed that the third promoter is oxygen independent, but the activity of this promoter was not enough to explain the aerobic level of mRNA. The posttranscriptional puf mRNA degradation is not significantly influenced by oxygen in R. sulfidophilum. From these results, we conclude that puf operon expression in R. sulfidophilum is weakly repressed by oxygen, perhaps as a result of the following: (i) there are three promoters for puf operon transcription, at least one of which is oxygen independent; (ii) readthrough transcripts which may not be affected by oxygen may be significant in maintaining the puf mRNA levels; and (iii) the puf mRNA is fairly stable even under aerobic conditions. PMID:10781546

  10. Photosynthetic light harvesting: excitons and coherence

    PubMed Central

    Fassioli, Francesca; Dinshaw, Rayomond; Arpin, Paul C.; Scholes, Gregory D.

    2014-01-01

    Photosynthesis begins with light harvesting, where specialized pigment–protein complexes transform sunlight into electronic excitations delivered to reaction centres to initiate charge separation. There is evidence that quantum coherence between electronic excited states plays a role in energy transfer. In this review, we discuss how quantum coherence manifests in photosynthetic light harvesting and its implications. We begin by examining the concept of an exciton, an excited electronic state delocalized over several spatially separated molecules, which is the most widely available signature of quantum coherence in light harvesting. We then discuss recent results concerning the possibility that quantum coherence between electronically excited states of donors and acceptors may give rise to a quantum coherent evolution of excitations, modifying the traditional incoherent picture of energy transfer. Key to this (partially) coherent energy transfer appears to be the structure of the environment, in particular the participation of non-equilibrium vibrational modes. We discuss the open questions and controversies regarding quantum coherent energy transfer and how these can be addressed using new experimental techniques. PMID:24352671

  11. Architecture and function of plant light-harvesting complexes II.

    PubMed

    Pan, Xiaowei; Liu, Zhenfeng; Li, Mei; Chang, Wenrui

    2013-08-01

    The antenna system associated with plant photosystem II (PSII) comprises a series of light-harvesting complexes II (LHCIIs) which are supramolecular assemblies of chlorophylls, carotenoids, lipids and integral membrane proteins. These complexes not only function in capturing and transmitting light energy, but also have pivotal roles in photoprotection under high-light conditions through a mechanism known as non-photochemical quenching process. Among them, the most abundant major species (majLHCII) is located at the periphery of PSII and forms homo/hetero-trimers. Besides, three minor species, named CP29, CP26 and CP24, are adjacent to the PSII core, exist in monomeric form and bridge the majLHCII trimers with the core complex. Structural studies on majLHCII and CP29 have revealed the overall architecture of plant LHC family, the binding sites of pigment molecules and the distribution pattern of chromophores in three-dimensional space. The high-resolution structural data of LHCIIs serve as fundamental bases for an improved understanding on the mechanisms of light harvesting, energy transfer and photoprotection processes in plants. PMID:23623335

  12. Absence of the major light harvesting antenna proteins alters the redox properties of photosystem II reaction centres in the chlorine F2 mutant of barley

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Although the chlorina F2 mutant of barley specifically exhibits reduced levels of the major light harvesting polypeptides (Lhcb) associated with photosystem II, thermoluminescence measurements of photosystem reaction centre photochemistry revealed that S2/S3QB- charge recombinations were shifted to ...

  13. Interaction between light harvesting chlorophyll-a/b protein (LHCII) kinase and cytochrome b6/f complex. In vitro control of kinase activity.

    PubMed

    Gal, A; Hauska, G; Herrmann, R; Ohad, I

    1990-11-15

    We have previously reported that the cytochrome b6/f complex may be involved in the redox activation of light harvesting chlorophyll-a/b protein complex of photosystem II (LHCII) kinase in higher plants (Gal, A., Shahak, Y., Schuster, G., and Ohad, I. (1987) FEBS Lett. 221, 205-210). The aim of this work was to establish whether a relation between the cytochrome b6/f and LHCII kinase activation can be demonstrated in vitro. Preparations enriched in cytochrome b6/f obtained from spinach thylakoids by detergent extraction and precipitation with ammonium sulfate followed by different procedures of purification, contained various amounts of LHCII kinase activity. Analysis of the cytochrome b6/f content and kinase activity of fractions obtained by histone-Sepharose and immunoaffinity columns, immunoprecipitation and sucrose density centrifugation, indicate functional association of kinase and cytochrome b6/f. Phosphorylation of LHCII by fractions containing both cytochrome b6/f and kinase was enhanced by addition of plastoquinol-1. LHCII phosphorylation and kinase activation could be obtained in fractions prepared by use of beta-D-octyl glucoside but not when 3-[(cholamidopropyl)dimethyl-ammonio]-1-propanesulfonate was used as the solubilizing detergent. Kinase activity could be inhibited by halogenated quinone analogues (2,5-dibromo-3-methyl-6-isopropyl-p-benzoquinone and 2,3-diiodo-5-t-butyl-p-benzoquinone) known to inhibit cytochrome b6/f activity. However, kinase activity was inhibited by these analogues in all preparations including those which could not phosphorylate LHCII. We thus propose that the redox activation of LHCII phosphorylation is mediated by kinase interaction with cytochrome b6/f while the deactivation may be related to a distinct quinone binding site of the enzyme molecule. PMID:2246258

  14. Synergistic Two-Photon Absorption Enhancement in Photosynthetic Light Harvesting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Kuo-Mei; Chen, Yu-Wei; Gao, Ting-Fong

    2012-06-01

    The grand scale fixation of solar energies into chemical substances by photosynthetic reactions of light-harvesting organisms provides Earth's other life forms a thriving environment. Scientific explorations in the past decades have unraveled the fundamental photophysical and photochemical processes in photosynthesis. Higher plants, green algae, and light-harvesting bacteria utilize organized pigment-protein complexes to harvest solar power efficiently and the resultant electronic excitations are funneled into a reaction center, where the first charge separation process takes place. Here we show experimental evidences that green algae (Chlorella vulgaris) in vivo display a synergistic two-photon absorption enhancement in their photosynthetic light harvesting. Their absorption coefficients at various wavelengths display dramatic dependence on the photon flux. This newly found phenomenon is attributed to a coherence-electronic-energy-transfer-mediated (CEETRAM) photon absorption process of light-harvesting pigment-protein complexes of green algae. Under the ambient light level, algae and higher plants can utilize this quantum mechanical mechanism to create two entangled electronic excitations adjacently in their light-harvesting networks. Concerted multiple electron transfer reactions in the reaction centers and oxygen evolving complexes can be implemented efficiently by the coherent motion of two entangled excitons from antennae to the charge separation reaction sites. To fabricate nanostructured, synthetic light-harvesting apparatus, the paramount role of the CEETRAM photon absorption mechanism should be seriously considered in the strategic guidelines.

  15. Brevetoxin, the Dinoflagellate Neurotoxin, Localizes to Thylakoid Membranes and Interacts with the Light-Harvesting Complex II (LHCII) of Photosystem II.

    PubMed

    Cassell, Ryan T; Chen, Wei; Thomas, Serge; Liu, Li; Rein, Kathleen S

    2015-05-01

    The brevetoxins are neurotoxins that are produced by the "Florida red tide" dinoflagellate Karenia brevis. They bind to and activate the voltage-gated sodium channels in higher organisms, specifically the Nav 1.4 and Nav 1.5 channel subtypes. However, the native physiological function that the brevetoxins perform for K. brevis is unknown. By using fluorescent and photoactivatable derivatives, brevetoxin was shown to localize to the chloroplast of K. brevis where it binds to the light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) and thioredoxin. The LHCII is essential to non-photochemical quenching (NPQ), whereas thioredoxins are critical to the maintenance of redox homeostasis within the chloroplast and contribute to the scavenging of reactive oxygen. A culture of K. brevis producing low levels of toxin was shown to be deficient in NPQ and produced reactive oxygen species at twice the rate of the toxic culture, implicating a role in NPQ for the brevetoxins. PMID:25825240

  16. Program PROTEUS for adding hydrogens to a protein structure and electrostatic field across carotenoids in light harvesting complexes and reaction centers from bacterial sources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lipovaca, Samir

    The hydrogen construction method presented in the program PROTEUS treats hydrogens depending on their torsional degrees of freedom. The positions of hydrogens with restricted torsional degrees of freedom are completely determined by the heavy atoms positions in the structure. The hydroxyl and water hydrogens are the only hydrogens that PROTEUS accepts as movable hydrogens (having rotational degrees of freedom). Their positions are determined by the interactions with neighboring atoms. PROTEUS interaction energy corresponds to a view that the hydrogen bond is affected, besides electrostatic effects and steric constraints of neighboring groups, by an inherent energy barrier that opposes free rotation of the hydroxyl hydrogen. For the water hydrogens that barrier is zero. The hydroxyl and water hydrogens are minimized within a short distance using the Threshold Accepting (TA) energy minimization method. PROTEUS can provide reasonable positions of movable hydrogens and a good initial protein structure for further investigations. We applied the program PROTEUS to place hydrogens in several resolved three-dimensional crystal structures of light harvesting complexes (LHCs) and reaction centers (RCs) from bacterial sources. Using program DelPhi we calculated the local electrostatic field across carotenoid generated by the protein's charges. In each structure we identified amino acids responsible for the field. Much of the field is generated by the charged residues. There are different ways that a RC or LHC uses charged residues. A nearby dipole consisting of the charged residues which are ionized in the physiological pH range (like Arg-Asp), is often used. Clusters of charged residues or scattered isolated charged residues around the carotenoid molecule also contribute. The polarizable field is not necessarily along the carotenoid molecule principal axis. For soluble LHCs the contribution of polar residues to the field cannot be neglected. Our calculations indicate an

  17. First solid-state NMR analysis of uniformly ¹³C-enriched major light-harvesting complexes from Chlamydomonas reinhardtii and identification of protein and cofactor spin clusters.

    PubMed

    Pandit, Anjali; Morosinotto, Tomas; Reus, Michael; Holzwarth, Alfred R; Bassi, Roberto; de Groot, Huub J M

    2011-04-01

    The light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) is the main component of the antenna system of plants and green algae and plays a major role in the capture of sun light for photosynthesis. The LHCII complexes have also been proposed to play a key role in the optimization of photosynthetic efficiency through the process of state 1-state 2 transitions and are involved in down-regulation of photosynthesis under excess light by energy dissipation through non-photochemical quenching (NPQ). We present here the first solid-state magic-angle spinning (MAS) NMR data of the major light-harvesting complex (LHCII) of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, a eukaryotic green alga. We are able to identify nuclear spin clusters of the protein and of its associated chlorophyll pigments in ¹³C-¹³C dipolar homonuclear correlation spectra on a uniformly ¹³C-labeled sample. In particular, we were able to resolve several chlorophyll 13¹ carbon resonances that are sensitive to hydrogen bonding to the 13¹-keto carbonyl group. The data show that ¹³C NMR signals of the pigments and protein sites are well resolved, thus paving the way to study possible structural reorganization processes involved in light-harvesting regulation through MAS solid-state NMR. PMID:21276419

  18. Design of a minimal polypeptide unit for bacteriochlorophyll binding and self-assembly based on photosynthetic bacterial light-harvesting proteins.

    PubMed

    Noy, Dror; Dutton, P Leslie

    2006-02-21

    We introduce LH1beta24, a minimal 24 amino acid polypeptide that binds and assembles bacteriochlorophylls (BChls) in micelles of octyl beta-glucoside (OG) into complexes with spectral properties that resemble those of B820, a universal intermediate in the assembly of native purple bacterial light-harvesting complexes (LHs). LH1beta24 was designed by a survey of sequences and crystal structures of bacterial LH proteins from different organisms combined with currently available information from in vitro reconstitution studies and genetically modified LHs in vivo. We took as a template for the design sphbeta31, a truncated 31 amino acid analogue of the native beta-apoprotein from the core LH complex of Rhodobacter sphaeroides. This peptide self-assembles with BChls to form B820 and, upon cooling and lowering OG concentration, forms red-shifted B850 spectral species that are considered analogous to native LH complexes. We find that LH1beta24 self-assembles with BChl in OG to form homodimeric B820-type subunits comprising two LH1beta24 and two BChl molecules per subunit. We demonstrate, by modeling the structure using the highly homologous structure of LH2 from Rhodospirillum molischianum, that it has the minimal size for BChl binding. Additionally, we have compared the self-assembly of sphbeta31 and LH1beta24 with BChls and discovered that the association enthalpies and entropies of both species are similar to those measured for native LH1 from Rhodospirillum rubrum. However, sphbeta31 readily aggregates into intermediate higher oligomeric species and further to form B850 species; moreover, the assembly process of these oligomers is not reversible, and they are apparently large nonspecific BChl-peptide coaggregates rather than well-defined nativelike LH complexes. Similar aggregates were observed during LH1beta24 assembly, but these were formed less readily and required lower temperatures than sphbeta31. In view of these results, we reevaluate previous in vitro

  19. Light-harvesting processes in the dynamic photosynthetic antenna.

    PubMed

    Duffy, C D P; Valkunas, L; Ruban, A V

    2013-11-21

    We present our perspective on the theoretical basis of light-harvesting within the photosynthetic membrane. Far from being a static structure, the photosynthetic membrane is a highly dynamic system, with protein mobility playing an important role in the damage/repair cycle of photosystem II (PSII), in balancing the input of energy between PSI and PSII, and in the photoprotection of PSII in response to a sudden excess of illumination. The concept of a photosynthetic antenna is illustrated and the state transition phenomenon is discussed as an example of purposeful antenna mobility. We discuss fluorescence recovery after photo-bleaching as a technique for visualising membrane mobility, before introducing light-induced grana membrane reorganisation as an integral part of the rapid photoprotective switch in plants. We then discuss current theoretical approaches to modelling the energy transfer dynamics of the PSII antenna: the atomistic models of intra-complex transfer and the coarse-grained approach to the inter-complex dynamics. Finally we discuss the future prospect of extending these methods, beyond the static picture of the membrane, to the dynamic PSII photosynthetic antenna. PMID:23868502

  20. Light-harvesting in photosystem I.

    PubMed

    Croce, Roberta; van Amerongen, Herbert

    2013-10-01

    This review focuses on the light-harvesting properties of photosystem I (PSI) and its LHCI outer antenna. LHCI consists of different chlorophyll a/b binding proteins called Lhca's, surrounding the core of PSI. In total, the PSI-LHCI complex of higher plants contains 173 chlorophyll molecules, most of which are there to harvest sunlight energy and to transfer the created excitation energy to the reaction center (RC) where it is used for charge separation. The efficiency of the complex is based on the capacity to deliver this energy to the RC as fast as possible, to minimize energy losses. The performance of PSI in this respect is remarkable: on average it takes around 50 ps for the excitation to reach the RC in plants, without being quenched in the meantime. This means that the internal quantum efficiency is close to 100% which makes PSI the most efficient energy converter in nature. In this review, we describe the light-harvesting properties of the complex in relation to protein and pigment organization/composition, and we discuss the important parameters that assure its very high quantum efficiency. Excitation energy transfer and trapping in the core and/or Lhcas, as well as in the supercomplexes PSI-LHCI and PSI-LHCI-LHCII are described in detail with the aim of giving an overview of the functional behavior of these complexes. PMID:23645376

  1. Up-converted fluorescence from photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes linearly dependent on excitation intensity.

    PubMed

    Leiger, Kristjan; Freiberg, Arvi

    2016-01-01

    Weak up-converted fluorescence related to bacteriochlorophyll a was recorded from various detergent-isolated and membrane-embedded light-harvesting pigment-protein complexes as well as from the functional membranes of photosynthetic purple bacteria under continuous-wave infrared laser excitation at 1064 nm, far outside the optically allowed singlet absorption bands of the chromophore. The fluorescence increases linearly with the excitation power, distinguishing it from the previously observed two-photon excited fluorescence upon femtosecond pulse excitation. Possible mechanisms of this excitation are discussed. PMID:25764015

  2. Principles of light harvesting from single photosynthetic complexes

    PubMed Central

    Schlau-Cohen, G. S.

    2015-01-01

    Photosynthetic systems harness sunlight to power most life on Earth. In the initial steps of photosynthetic light harvesting, absorbed energy is converted to chemical energy with near-unity quantum efficiency. This is achieved by an efficient, directional and regulated flow of energy through a network of proteins. Here, we discuss the following three key principles of this flow and of photosynthetic light harvesting: thermal fluctuations of the protein structure; intrinsic conformational switches with defined functional consequences; and environmentally triggered conformational switches. Through these principles, photosynthetic systems balance two types of operational costs: metabolic costs, or the cost of maintaining and running the molecular machinery, and opportunity costs, or the cost of losing any operational time. Understanding how the molecular machinery and dynamics are designed to balance these costs may provide a blueprint for improved artificial light-harvesting devices. With a multi-disciplinary approach combining knowledge of biology, this blueprint could lead to low-cost and more effective solar energy conversion. Photosynthetic systems achieve widespread light harvesting across the Earth's surface; in the face of our growing energy needs, this is functionality we need to replicate, and perhaps emulate. PMID:26052423

  3. Principles of light harvesting from single photosynthetic complexes.

    PubMed

    Schlau-Cohen, G S

    2015-06-01

    Photosynthetic systems harness sunlight to power most life on Earth. In the initial steps of photosynthetic light harvesting, absorbed energy is converted to chemical energy with near-unity quantum efficiency. This is achieved by an efficient, directional and regulated flow of energy through a network of proteins. Here, we discuss the following three key principles of this flow and of photosynthetic light harvesting: thermal fluctuations of the protein structure; intrinsic conformational switches with defined functional consequences; and environmentally triggered conformational switches. Through these principles, photosynthetic systems balance two types of operational costs: metabolic costs, or the cost of maintaining and running the molecular machinery, and opportunity costs, or the cost of losing any operational time. Understanding how the molecular machinery and dynamics are designed to balance these costs may provide a blueprint for improved artificial light-harvesting devices. With a multi-disciplinary approach combining knowledge of biology, this blueprint could lead to low-cost and more effective solar energy conversion. Photosynthetic systems achieve widespread light harvesting across the Earth's surface; in the face of our growing energy needs, this is functionality we need to replicate, and perhaps emulate. PMID:26052423

  4. Differential Control of Xanthophylls and Light-Induced Stress Proteins, as Opposed to Light-Harvesting Chlorophyll a/b Proteins, during Photosynthetic Acclimation of Barley Leaves to Light Irradiance

    PubMed Central

    Montané, Marie-Hélène; Tardy, Florence; Kloppstech, Klaus; Havaux, Michel

    1998-01-01

    Barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) plants were grown at different photon flux densities ranging from 100 to 1800 μmol m−2 s−1 in air and/or in atmospheres with reduced levels of O2 and CO2. Low O2 and CO2 partial pressures allowed plants to grow under high photosystem II (PSII) excitation pressure, estimated in vivo by chlorophyll fluorescence measurements, at moderate photon flux densities. The xanthophyll-cycle pigments, the early light-inducible proteins, and their mRNA accumulated with increasing PSII excitation pressure irrespective of the way high excitation pressure was obtained (high-light irradiance or decreased CO2 and O2 availability). These findings indicate that the reduction state of electron transport chain components could be involved in light sensing for the regulation of nuclear-encoded chloroplast gene expression. In contrast, no correlation was found between the reduction state of PSII and various indicators of the PSII light-harvesting system, such as the chlorophyll a-to-b ratio, the abundance of the major pigment-protein complex of PSII (LHCII), the mRNA level of LHCII, the light-saturation curve of O2 evolution, and the induced chlorophyll-fluorescence rise. We conclude that the chlorophyll antenna size of PSII is not governed by the redox state of PSII in higher plants and, consequently, regulation of early light-inducible protein synthesis is different from that of LHCII. PMID:9733542

  5. Excitation migration in fluctuating light-harvesting antenna systems.

    PubMed

    Chmeliov, Jevgenij; Trinkunas, Gediminas; van Amerongen, Herbert; Valkunas, Leonas

    2016-01-01

    Complex multi-exponential fluorescence decay kinetics observed in various photosynthetic systems like photosystem II (PSII) have often been explained by the reversible quenching mechanism of the charge separation taking place in the reaction center (RC) of PSII. However, this description does not account for the intrinsic dynamic disorder of the light-harvesting proteins as well as their fluctuating dislocations within the antenna, which also facilitate the repair of RCs, state transitions, and the process of non-photochemical quenching. Since dynamic fluctuations result in varying connectivity between pigment-protein complexes, they can also lead to non-exponential excitation decay kinetics. Based on this presumption, we have recently proposed a simple conceptual model describing excitation diffusion in a continuous medium and accounting for possible variations of the excitation transfer pathways. In the current work, this model is further developed and then applied to describe fluorescence kinetics originating from very diverse antenna systems, ranging from PSII of various sizes to LHCII aggregates and even the entire thylakoid membrane. In all cases, complex multi-exponential fluorescence kinetics are perfectly reproduced on the entire relevant time scale without assuming any radical pair equilibration at the side of the excitation quencher, but using just a few parameters reflecting the mean excitation energy transfer rate as well as the overall average organization of the photosynthetic antenna. PMID:25605669

  6. Energizing the light harvesting antenna: Insight from CP29.

    PubMed

    Ioannidis, Nikolaos E; Papadatos, Sotiris; Daskalakis, Vangelis

    2016-10-01

    How do plants cope with excess light energy? Crop health and stress tolerance are governed by molecular photoprotective mechanisms. Protective exciton quenching in plants is activated by membrane energization, via unclear conformational changes in proteins called antennas. Here we show that pH and salt gradients stimulate the response of such an antenna under low and high energization by all-atom Molecular Dynamics Simulations. Novel insight establishes that helix-5 (H5) conformation in CP29 from spinach is regulated by chemiosmotic factors. This is selectively correlated with the chl-614 macrocycle deformation and interactions with nearby pigments, that could suggest a role in plant photoprotection. Adding to the significance of our findings, H5 domain is conserved among five antennas (LHCB1-5). These results suggest that light harvesting complexes of Photosystem II, one of the most abundant proteins on earth, can sense chemiosmotic gradients via their H5 domains in an upgraded role from a solar detector to also a chemiosmotic sensor. PMID:27438094

  7. The terminal phycobilisome emitter, LCM: A light-harvesting pigment with a phytochrome chromophore.

    PubMed

    Tang, Kun; Ding, Wen-Long; Höppner, Astrid; Zhao, Cheng; Zhang, Lun; Hontani, Yusaku; Kennis, John T M; Gärtner, Wolfgang; Scheer, Hugo; Zhou, Ming; Zhao, Kai-Hong

    2015-12-29

    Photosynthesis relies on energy transfer from light-harvesting complexes to reaction centers. Phycobilisomes, the light-harvesting antennas in cyanobacteria and red algae, attach to the membrane via the multidomain core-membrane linker, L(CM). The chromophore domain of L(CM) forms a bottleneck for funneling the harvested energy either productively to reaction centers or, in case of light overload, to quenchers like orange carotenoid protein (OCP) that prevent photodamage. The crystal structure of the solubly modified chromophore domain from Nostoc sp. PCC7120 was resolved at 2.2 Å. Although its protein fold is similar to the protein folds of phycobiliproteins, the phycocyanobilin (PCB) chromophore adopts ZZZssa geometry, which is unknown among phycobiliproteins but characteristic for sensory photoreceptors (phytochromes and cyanobacteriochromes). However, chromophore photoisomerization is inhibited in L(CM) by tight packing. The ZZZssa geometry of the chromophore and π-π stacking with a neighboring Trp account for the functionally relevant extreme spectral red shift of L(CM). Exciton coupling is excluded by the large distance between two PCBs in a homodimer and by preservation of the spectral features in monomers. The structure also indicates a distinct flexibility that could be involved in quenching. The conclusions from the crystal structure are supported by femtosecond transient absorption spectra in solution. PMID:26669441

  8. The terminal phycobilisome emitter, LCM: A light-harvesting pigment with a phytochrome chromophore

    PubMed Central

    Tang, Kun; Ding, Wen-Long; Höppner, Astrid; Zhao, Cheng; Zhang, Lun; Hontani, Yusaku; Kennis, John T. M.; Gärtner, Wolfgang; Scheer, Hugo; Zhou, Ming; Zhao, Kai-Hong

    2015-01-01

    Photosynthesis relies on energy transfer from light-harvesting complexes to reaction centers. Phycobilisomes, the light-harvesting antennas in cyanobacteria and red algae, attach to the membrane via the multidomain core-membrane linker, LCM. The chromophore domain of LCM forms a bottleneck for funneling the harvested energy either productively to reaction centers or, in case of light overload, to quenchers like orange carotenoid protein (OCP) that prevent photodamage. The crystal structure of the solubly modified chromophore domain from Nostoc sp. PCC7120 was resolved at 2.2 Å. Although its protein fold is similar to the protein folds of phycobiliproteins, the phycocyanobilin (PCB) chromophore adopts ZZZssa geometry, which is unknown among phycobiliproteins but characteristic for sensory photoreceptors (phytochromes and cyanobacteriochromes). However, chromophore photoisomerization is inhibited in LCM by tight packing. The ZZZssa geometry of the chromophore and π-π stacking with a neighboring Trp account for the functionally relevant extreme spectral red shift of LCM. Exciton coupling is excluded by the large distance between two PCBs in a homodimer and by preservation of the spectral features in monomers. The structure also indicates a distinct flexibility that could be involved in quenching. The conclusions from the crystal structure are supported by femtosecond transient absorption spectra in solution. PMID:26669441

  9. Distribution and self-organization of photosynthetic pigments in micelles: implication for the assembly of light-harvesting complexes and reaction centers in the photosynthetic membrane.

    PubMed Central

    Scherz, A; Rosenbach-Belkin, V; Fisher, J R

    1990-01-01

    The addition of bacteriochlorophylls and bacteriopheophytins to formamide/water, 3:1 (vol/vol), (or water) containing small spherical micelles of Triton X-100 leads to the reorganization of the detergent into micelles that consist of 5000-40,000 amphiphilic molecules. The pigment distribution within the micelles was determined by modified Poisson statistics taking into consideration the various sizes of micelles. Pigment dimerization occurred in micelles with more than a single occupant and was driven by a free-energy change of -4.5 kcal/mol (1 cal = 4.184 J) for bacteriochlorophyll a in formamide/water, -7.6 kcal/mol for bacteriopheophytin a in formamide/water, and -6.6 kcal/mol for bacteriopheophytin a in water. These values correspond to the room temperature equilibrium constants 2.2 x 10(3) M-1, 3.9 x 10(5) M-1, and 7.5 x 10(4) M-1, respectively. The incorporation of bacteriochlorophylls with attached small formamide polymers and the subsequent dimerization of these pigments in the lipid phase provide a model for studying the synergetic organization of polypeptides and bacteriochlorophyll clusters in the photosynthetic membrane. PMID:11607092

  10. Comparison of the rate constants for energy transfer in the light-harvesting protein, C-phycocyanin, calculated from Foerster`s theory and experimentally measured by time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Debreczeny, M.P.

    1994-05-01

    We have measured and assigned rate constants for energy transfer between chromophores in the light-harvesting protein C-phycocyanin (PC), in the monomeric and trimeric aggregation states, isolated from Synechococcus sp. PCC 7002. In order to compare the measured rate constants with those predicted by Fdrster`s theory of inductive resonance in the weak coupling limit, we have experimentally resolved several properties of the three chromophore types ({beta}{sub 155} {alpha}{sub 84}, {beta}{sub 84}) found in PC monomers, including absorption and fluorescence spectra, extinction coefficients, fluorescence quantum yields, and fluorescence lifetimes. The cpcB/C155S mutant, whose PC is missing the {beta}{sub 155} chromophore, was, useful in effecting the resolution of the chromophore properties and in assigning the experimentally observed rate constants for energy transfer to specific pathways.

  11. Interference lithographic nanopatterning of plant and bacterial light-harvesting complexes on gold substrates

    PubMed Central

    Patole, Samson; Vasilev, Cvetelin; El-Zubir, Osama; Wang, Lin; Johnson, Matthew P.; Cadby, Ashley J.; Leggett, Graham J.; Hunter, C. Neil

    2015-01-01

    We describe a facile approach for nanopatterning of photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes over macroscopic areas, and use optical spectroscopy to demonstrate retention of native properties by both site-specifically and non-specifically attached photosynthetic membrane proteins. A Lloyd's mirror dual-beam interferometer was used to expose self-assembled monolayers of amine-terminated alkylthiolates on gold to laser irradiation. Following exposure, photo-oxidized adsorbates were replaced by oligo(ethylene glycol) terminated thiols, and the remaining intact amine-functionalized regions were used for attachment of the major light-harvesting chlorophyll–protein complex from plants, LHCII. These amine patterns could be derivatized with nitrilotriacetic acid (NTA), so that polyhistidine-tagged bacteriochlorophyll–protein complexes from phototrophic bacteria could be attached with a defined surface orientation. By varying parameters such as the angle between the interfering beams and the laser irradiation dose, it was possible to vary the period and widths of NTA and amine-functionalized lines on the surfaces; periods varied from 1200 to 240 nm and linewidths as small as 60 nm (λ/4) were achieved. This level of control over the surface chemistry was reflected in the surface topology of the protein nanostructures imaged by atomic force microscopy; fluorescence imaging and spectral measurements demonstrated that the surface-attached proteins had retained their native functionality. PMID:26464784

  12. In Vivo Identification of Photosystem II Light Harvesting Complexes Interacting with PHOTOSYSTEM II SUBUNIT S.

    PubMed

    Gerotto, Caterina; Franchin, Cinzia; Arrigoni, Giorgio; Morosinotto, Tomas

    2015-08-01

    Light is the primary energy source for photosynthetic organisms, but in excess, it can generate reactive oxygen species and lead to cell damage. Plants evolved multiple mechanisms to modulate light use efficiency depending on illumination intensity to thrive in a highly dynamic natural environment. One of the main mechanisms for protection from intense illumination is the dissipation of excess excitation energy as heat, a process called nonphotochemical quenching. In plants, nonphotochemical quenching induction depends on the generation of a pH gradient across thylakoid membranes and on the presence of a protein called PHOTOSYSTEM II SUBUNIT S (PSBS). Here, we generated Physcomitrella patens lines expressing histidine-tagged PSBS that were exploited to purify the native protein by affinity chromatography. The mild conditions used in the purification allowed copurifying PSBS with its interactors, which were identified by mass spectrometry analysis to be mainly photosystem II antenna proteins, such as LIGHT-HARVESTING COMPLEX B (LHCB). PSBS interaction with other proteins appears to be promiscuous and not exclusive, although the major proteins copurified with PSBS were components of the LHCII trimers (LHCB3 and LHCBM). These results provide evidence of a physical interaction between specific photosystem II light-harvesting complexes and PSBS in the thylakoids, suggesting that these subunits are major players in heat dissipation of excess energy. PMID:26069151

  13. Drugging Membrane Protein Interactions.

    PubMed

    Yin, Hang; Flynn, Aaron D

    2016-07-11

    The majority of therapeutics target membrane proteins, accessible on the surface of cells, to alter cellular signaling. Cells use membrane proteins to transduce signals into cells, transport ions and molecules, bind cells to a surface or substrate, and catalyze reactions. Newly devised technologies allow us to drug conventionally "undruggable" regions of membrane proteins, enabling modulation of protein-protein, protein-lipid, and protein-nucleic acid interactions. In this review, we survey the state of the art of high-throughput screening and rational design in drug discovery, and we evaluate the advances in biological understanding and technological capacity that will drive pharmacotherapy forward against unorthodox membrane protein targets. PMID:26863923

  14. Distinct roles of the photosystem II protein PsbS and zeaxanthin in the regulation of light harvesting in plants revealed by fluorescence lifetime snapshots

    SciTech Connect

    Sylak-Glassman, Emily J.; Malnoë, Alizée; De Re, Eleonora; Brooks, Matthew D.; Fischer, Alexandra Lee; Niyogi, Krishna K.; Fleming, Graham R.

    2014-10-01

    The photosystem II (PSII) protein PsbS and the enzyme violaxanthin deepoxidase (VDE) are known to influence the dynamics of energy-dependent quenching (qE), the component of nonphotochemical quenching (NPQ) that allows plants to respond to fast fluctuations in light intensity. Although the absence of PsbS and VDE has been shown to change the amount of quenching, there have not been any measurements that can detect whether the presence of these proteins alters the type of quenching that occurs. The chlorophyll fluorescence lifetime probes the excited-state chlorophyll relaxation dynamics and can be used to determine the amount of quenching as well as whether two different genotypes with the same amount of NPQ have similar dynamics of excited-state chlorophyll relaxation. We measured the fluorescence lifetimes on whole leaves of Arabidopsis thaliana throughout the induction and relaxation of NPQ for wild type and the qE mutants, npq4, which lacks PsbS; npq1, which lacks VDE and cannot convert violaxanthin to zeaxanthin; and npq1 npq4, which lacks both VDE and PsbS. These measurements show that although PsbS changes the amount of quenching and the rate at which quenching turns on, it does not affect the relaxation dynamics of excited chlorophyll during quenching. In addition, the data suggest that PsbS responds not only to ΔpH but also to the Δψ across the thylakoid membrane. In contrast, the presence of VDE, which is necessary for the accumulation of zeaxanthin, affects the excited-state chlorophyll relaxation dynamics.

  15. Distinct roles of the photosystem II protein PsbS and zeaxanthin in the regulation of light harvesting in plants revealed by fluorescence lifetime snapshots

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Sylak-Glassman, Emily J.; Malnoë, Alizée; De Re, Eleonora; Brooks, Matthew D.; Fischer, Alexandra Lee; Niyogi, Krishna K.; Fleming, Graham R.

    2014-10-01

    The photosystem II (PSII) protein PsbS and the enzyme violaxanthin deepoxidase (VDE) are known to influence the dynamics of energy-dependent quenching (qE), the component of nonphotochemical quenching (NPQ) that allows plants to respond to fast fluctuations in light intensity. Although the absence of PsbS and VDE has been shown to change the amount of quenching, there have not been any measurements that can detect whether the presence of these proteins alters the type of quenching that occurs. The chlorophyll fluorescence lifetime probes the excited-state chlorophyll relaxation dynamics and can be used to determine the amount of quenching as well asmore » whether two different genotypes with the same amount of NPQ have similar dynamics of excited-state chlorophyll relaxation. We measured the fluorescence lifetimes on whole leaves of Arabidopsis thaliana throughout the induction and relaxation of NPQ for wild type and the qE mutants, npq4, which lacks PsbS; npq1, which lacks VDE and cannot convert violaxanthin to zeaxanthin; and npq1 npq4, which lacks both VDE and PsbS. These measurements show that although PsbS changes the amount of quenching and the rate at which quenching turns on, it does not affect the relaxation dynamics of excited chlorophyll during quenching. In addition, the data suggest that PsbS responds not only to ΔpH but also to the Δψ across the thylakoid membrane. In contrast, the presence of VDE, which is necessary for the accumulation of zeaxanthin, affects the excited-state chlorophyll relaxation dynamics.« less

  16. Macroorganization of Chlorophyll a/b light-harvesting complex in thylakoids and aggregates: information from circular differential scattering

    SciTech Connect

    Garab, G.; Faludi-Daniel, A.; Sutherland, J.C.; Hind, G.

    1988-04-05

    Circular dichroism (CD) and magnetic circular dichroism (MCD) spectra were recorded for spinach thylakoids and for isolated, aggregated chlorophyll a/b light-harvesting pigment-protein complex, in random and magnetically aligned states of orientation at room and low temperatures. The shape and magnitude of the CD signal of most bands strongly depended on the orientation of the thylakoid membranes or the aggregated pigment-protein complex. In both thylakoids and aggregated light-harvesting complexes, however, the MCD spectra of the two different orientations were almost identical. Random and magnetically aligned samples exhibited anomalous, large CD signals outside the bands of pigment absorbance. Lack of similarity between the corresponding MCD and CD spectra showed that the large CD signals are not produced as a distortion of CD of absorbance by light scattering. Instead, these anomalous spectral features are believed to originate in differential selective scattering of circularly polarized light. The results lead to the conclusion that the light-harvesting pigment-protein complex in thylakoid grana forms a helical macroarray with dimensions commensurate with the wavelengths of the anomalous circular dichroism signals. A hypothesis is put forward suggesting a role for these macrodomains in granal organization.

  17. Evolution and functional properties of photosystem II light harvesting complexes in eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Ballottari, Matteo; Girardon, Julien; Dall'osto, Luca; Bassi, Roberto

    2012-01-01

    Photoautotrophic organisms, the major agent of inorganic carbon fixation into biomass, convert light energy into chemical energy. The first step of photosynthesis consists of the absorption of solar energy by pigments binding protein complexes named photosystems. Within photosystems, a family of proteins called Light Harvesting Complexes (LHC), responsible for light harvesting and energy transfer to reaction centers, has evolved along with eukaryotic organisms. Besides light absorption, these proteins catalyze photoprotective reactions which allowed functioning of oxygenic photosynthetic machinery in the increasingly oxidant environment. In this work we review current knowledge of LHC proteins serving Photosystem II. Balance between light harvesting and photoprotection is critical in Photosystem II, due to the lower quantum efficiency as compared to Photosystem I. In particular, we focus on the role of each antenna complex in light harvesting, energy transfer, scavenging of reactive oxygen species, chlorophyll triplet quenching and thermal dissipation of excess energy. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Photosystem II. PMID:21704018

  18. Zeaxanthin Radical Cation Formation in Minor Light-Harvesting Complexes of Higher Plant Antenna

    SciTech Connect

    Avenson, Thomas H.; Ahn, Tae Kyu; Zigmantas, Donatas; Niyogi, Krishna K.; Li, Zhirong; Ballottari, Matteo; Bassi, Roberto; Fleming, Graham R.

    2008-01-31

    Previous work on intact thylakoid membranes showed that transient formation of a zeaxanthin radical cation was correlated with regulation of photosynthetic light-harvesting via energy-dependent quenching. A molecular mechanism for such quenching was proposed to involve charge transfer within a chlorophyll-zeaxanthin heterodimer. Using near infrared (880-1100 nm) transient absorption spectroscopy, we demonstrate that carotenoid (mainly zeaxanthin) radical cation generation occurs solely in isolated minor light-harvesting complexes that bind zeaxanthin, consistent with the engagement of charge transfer quenching therein. We estimated that less than 0.5percent of the isolated minor complexes undergo charge transfer quenching in vitro, whereas the fraction of minor complexes estimated to be engaged in charge transfer quenching in isolated thylakoids was more than 80 times higher. We conclude that minor complexes which bind zeaxanthin are sites of charge transfer quenching in vivo and that they can assume Non-quenching and Quenching conformations, the equilibrium LHC(N)<--> LHC(Q) of which is modulated by the transthylakoid pH gradient, the PsbS protein, and protein-protein interactions.

  19. Pigment Interactions in Light-harvesting Complex II in Different Molecular Environments*

    PubMed Central

    Akhtar, Parveen; Dorogi, Márta; Pawlak, Krzysztof; Kovács, László; Bóta, Attila; Kiss, Teréz; Garab, Győző; Lambrev, Petar H.

    2015-01-01

    Extraction of plant light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) from the native thylakoid membrane or from aggregates by the use of surfactants brings about significant changes in the excitonic circular dichroism (CD) spectrum and fluorescence quantum yield. To elucidate the cause of these changes, e.g. trimer-trimer contacts or surfactant-induced structural perturbations, we compared the CD spectra and fluorescence kinetics of LHCII aggregates, artificial and native LHCII-lipid membranes, and LHCII solubilized in different detergents or trapped in polymer gel. By this means we were able to identify CD spectral changes specific to LHCII-LHCII interactions, at (−)-437 and (+)-484 nm, and changes specific to the interaction with the detergent n-dodecyl-β-maltoside (β-DM) or membrane lipids, at (+)-447 and (−)-494 nm. The latter change is attributed to the conformational change of the LHCII-bound carotenoid neoxanthin, by analyzing the CD spectra of neoxanthin-deficient plant thylakoid membranes. The neoxanthin-specific band at (−)-494 nm was not pronounced in LHCII in detergent-free gels or solubilized in the α isomer of DM but was present when LHCII was reconstituted in membranes composed of phosphatidylcholine or plant thylakoid lipids, indicating that the conformation of neoxanthin is sensitive to the molecular environment. Neither the aggregation-specific CD bands, nor the surfactant-specific bands were positively associated with the onset of fluorescence quenching, which could be triggered without invoking such spectral changes. Significant quenching was not active in reconstituted LHCII proteoliposomes, whereas a high degree of energetic connectivity, depending on the lipid:protein ratio, in these membranes allows for efficient light harvesting. PMID:25525277

  20. Excited state dynamics in photosynthetic reaction center and light harvesting complex 1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strümpfer, Johan; Schulten, Klaus

    2012-08-01

    Key to efficient harvesting of sunlight in photosynthesis is the first energy conversion process in which electronic excitation establishes a trans-membrane charge gradient. This conversion is accomplished by the photosynthetic reaction center (RC) that is, in case of the purple photosynthetic bacterium Rhodobacter sphaeroides studied here, surrounded by light harvesting complex 1 (LH1). The RC employs six pigment molecules to initiate the conversion: four bacteriochlorophylls and two bacteriopheophytins. The excited states of these pigments interact very strongly and are simultaneously influenced by the surrounding thermal protein environment. Likewise, LH1 employs 32 bacteriochlorophylls influenced in their excited state dynamics by strong interaction between the pigments and by interaction with the protein environment. Modeling the excited state dynamics in the RC as well as in LH1 requires theoretical methods, which account for both pigment-pigment interaction and pigment-environment interaction. In the present study we describe the excitation dynamics within a RC and excitation transfer between light harvesting complex 1 (LH1) and RC, employing the hierarchical equation of motion method. For this purpose a set of model parameters that reproduce RC as well as LH1 spectra and observed oscillatory excitation dynamics in the RC is suggested. We find that the environment has a significant effect on LH1-RC excitation transfer and that excitation transfers incoherently between LH1 and RC.

  1. Structure of Light-Harvesting Aggregates in Individual Chlorosomes.

    PubMed

    Günther, Lisa M; Jendrny, Marc; Bloemsma, Erik A; Tank, Marcus; Oostergetel, Gert T; Bryant, Donald A; Knoester, Jasper; Köhler, Jürgen

    2016-06-23

    Among all photosynthetic organisms, green bacteria have evolved one of the most efficient light-harvesting antenna, the chlorosome, that contains hundreds of thousands of bacteriochlorophyll molecules, allowing these bacteria to grow photosynthetically by absorbing only a few photons per bacteriochlorophyll molecule per day. In contrast to other photosynthetic light-harvesting antenna systems, for which a protein scaffold imposes the proper positioning of the chromophores with respect to each other, in chlorosomes, this is accomplished solely by self-assembly. This has aroused enormous interest in the structure-function relations of these assemblies, as they can serve as blueprints for artificial light harvesting systems. In spite of these efforts, conclusive structural information is not available yet, reflecting the sample heterogeneity inherent to the natural system. Here we combine mutagenesis, polarization-resolved single-particle fluorescence-excitation spectroscopy, cryo-electron microscopy, and theoretical modeling to study the chlorosomes of the green sulfur bacterium Chlorobaculum tepidum. We demonstrate that only the combination of these techniques yields unambiguous information on the structure of the bacteriochlorophyll aggregates within the chlorosomes. Moreover, we provide a quantitative estimate of the curvature variation of these aggregates that explains ongoing debates concerning the chlorosome structure. PMID:27240572

  2. Optimal Energy Transfer in Light-Harvesting Systems.

    PubMed

    Chen, Lipeng; Shenai, Prathamesh; Zheng, Fulu; Somoza, Alejandro; Zhao, Yang

    2015-01-01

    Photosynthesis is one of the most essential biological processes in which specialized pigment-protein complexes absorb solar photons, and with a remarkably high efficiency, guide the photo-induced excitation energy toward the reaction center to subsequently trigger its conversion to chemical energy. In this work, we review the principles of optimal energy transfer in various natural and artificial light harvesting systems. We begin by presenting the guiding principles for optimizing the energy transfer efficiency in systems connected to dissipative environments, with particular attention paid to the potential role of quantum coherence in light harvesting systems. We will comment briefly on photo-protective mechanisms in natural systems that ensure optimal functionality under varying ambient conditions. For completeness, we will also present an overview of the charge separation and electron transfer pathways in reaction centers. Finally, recent theoretical and experimental progress on excitation energy transfer, charge separation, and charge transport in artificial light harvesting systems is delineated, with organic solar cells taken as prime examples. PMID:26307957

  3. Biomolecular membrane protein crystallization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reddy Bolla, Jani; Su, Chih-Chia; Yu, Edward W.

    2012-07-01

    Integral membrane proteins comprise approximately 30% of the sequenced genomes, and there is an immediate need for their high-resolution structural information. Currently, the most reliable approach to obtain these structures is X-ray crystallography. However, obtaining crystals of membrane proteins that diffract to high resolution appears to be quite challenging, and remains a major obstacle in structural determination. This brief review summarizes a variety of methodologies for use in crystallizing these membrane proteins. Hopefully, by introducing the available methods, techniques, and providing a general understanding of membrane proteins, a rational decision can be made about now to crystallize these complex materials.

  4. Lipid membranes for membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Kukol, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    The molecular dynamics (MD) simulation of membrane proteins requires the setup of an accurate representation of lipid bilayers. This chapter describes the setup of a lipid bilayer system from scratch using generally available tools, starting with a definition of the lipid molecule POPE, generation of a lipid bilayer, energy minimization, MD simulation, and data analysis. The data analysis includes the calculation of area and volume per lipid, deuterium order parameters, self-diffusion constant, and the electron density profile. PMID:25330959

  5. The size of the light-harvesting antenna of higher plant photosystem II is regulated by illumination intensity through transcription of antenna protein genes.

    PubMed

    Borisova-Mubarakshina, M M; Vetoshkina, D V; Rudenko, N N; Shirshikova, G N; Fedorchuk, T P; Naydov, I A; Ivanov, B N

    2014-06-01

    In arabidopsis plants, with an increase in illumination intensity during growth the extent of reduction of the plastoquinone pool in the photosynthetic electron transport chain increased, whereas the effective quantum yield of photosynthesis decreased. After 5 days of growth under high illumination intensity, these parameters in high light returned to values observed in "shade-adapted" plants in low light. During the same period, the size of the antenna decreased, correlating with a decrease in the amounts of proteins of peripheral pigment-protein complexes. It was found that the decrease in the amounts of these proteins occurred due to suppression of transcription of their genes. PMID:25100009

  6. Investigation of Detergent Effects on the Solution Structure of Spinach Light Harvesting Complex II

    SciTech Connect

    Cardoso, Mateus B; Smolensky, Dmitriy; Heller, William T; O'Neill, Hugh Michael

    2010-01-01

    The properties of spinach light harvesting complex II (LHC II), stabilized in the detergents Triton X-100 (TX100) and n-Octyl-{beta}-D-Glucoside (BOG), were investigated by small-angle neutron scattering (SANS). The LHC II-BOG scattering curve overlaid well with the theoretical scattering curve generated from the crystal structure of LHC II indicating that the protein preparation was in its native functional state. On the other hand, the simulated LHC II curve deviated significantly from the LHC II-TX100 experimental data. Analysis by circular dichroism spectroscopy supported the SANS analysis and showed that LHC II-TX100 is inactivated. This investigation has implications for extracting and stabilizing photosynthetic membrane proteins for the development of biohybrid photoconversion devices.

  7. Investigation of detergent effects on the solution structure of spinach Light Harvesting Complex II

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cardoso, Mateus B.; Smolensky, Dmitriy; Heller, William T.; O'Neill, Hugh

    2010-11-01

    The properties of spinach light harvesting complex II (LHC II), stabilized in the detergents Triton X-100 (TX100) and n-Octyl-β-D-Glucoside (BOG), were investigated by small-angle neutron scattering (SANS). The LHC II-BOG scattering curve overlaid well with the theoretical scattering curve generated from the crystal structure of LHC II indicating that the protein preparation was in its native functional state. On the other hand, the simulated LHC II curve deviated significantly from the LHC II-TX100 experimental data. Analysis by circular dichroism spectroscopy supported the SANS analysis and showed that LHC II-TX100 is inactivated. This investigation has implications for extracting and stabilizing photosynthetic membrane proteins for the development of biohybrid photoconversion devices.

  8. Role of xanthophylls in light harvesting in green plants: a spectroscopic investigation of mutant LHCII and Lhcb pigment-protein complexes.

    PubMed

    Fuciman, Marcel; Enriquez, Miriam M; Polívka, Tomáš; Dall'Osto, Luca; Bassi, Roberto; Frank, Harry A

    2012-03-29

    The spectroscopic properties and energy transfer dynamics of the protein-bound chlorophylls and xanthophylls in monomeric, major LHCII complexes, and minor Lhcb complexes from genetically altered Arabidopsis thaliana plants have been investigated using both steady-state and time-resolved absorption and fluorescence spectroscopic methods. The pigment-protein complexes that were studied contain Chl a, Chl b, and variable amounts of the xanthophylls, zeaxanthin (Z), violaxanthin (V), neoxanthin (N), and lutein (L). The complexes were derived from mutants of plants denoted npq1 (NVL), npq2lut2 (Z), aba4npq1lut2 (V), aba4npq1 (VL), npq1lut2 (NV), and npq2 (LZ). The data reveal specific singlet energy transfer routes and excited state spectra and dynamics that depend on the xanthophyll present in the complex. PMID:22372667

  9. Differential mobility of pigment-protein complexes in granal and agranal thylakoid membranes of C₃ and C₄ plants.

    PubMed

    Kirchhoff, Helmut; Sharpe, Richard M; Herbstova, Miroslava; Yarbrough, Robert; Edwards, Gerald E

    2013-01-01

    The photosynthetic performance of plants is crucially dependent on the mobility of the molecular complexes that catalyze the conversion of sunlight to metabolic energy equivalents in the thylakoid membrane network inside chloroplasts. The role of the extensive folding of thylakoid membranes leading to structural differentiation into stacked grana regions and unstacked stroma lamellae for diffusion-based processes of the photosynthetic machinery is poorly understood. This study examines, to our knowledge for the first time, the mobility of photosynthetic pigment-protein complexes in unstacked thylakoid regions in the C₃ plant Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) and agranal bundle sheath chloroplasts of the C₄ plants sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) and maize (Zea mays) by the fluorescence recovery after photobleaching technique. In unstacked thylakoid membranes, more than 50% of the protein complexes are mobile, whereas this number drops to about 20% in stacked grana regions. The higher molecular mobility in unstacked thylakoid regions is explained by a lower protein-packing density compared with stacked grana regions. It is postulated that thylakoid membrane stacking to form grana leads to protein crowding that impedes lateral diffusion processes but is required for efficient light harvesting of the modularly organized photosystem II and its light-harvesting antenna system. In contrast, the arrangement of the photosystem I light-harvesting complex I in separate units in unstacked thylakoid membranes does not require dense protein packing, which is advantageous for protein diffusion. PMID:23148078

  10. Drugging Membrane Protein Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Hang; Flynn, Aaron D.

    2016-01-01

    The majority of therapeutics target membrane proteins, accessible on the surface of cells, to alter cellular signaling. Cells use membrane proteins to transduce signals into cells, transport ions and molecules, bind the cell to a surface or substrate, and catalyze reactions. Newly devised technologies allow us to drug conventionally “undruggable” regions of membrane proteins, enabling modulation of protein–protein, protein–lipid, and protein–nucleic acid interactions. In this review, we survey the state of the art in high-throughput screening and rational design in drug discovery, and we evaluate the advances in biological understanding and technological capacity that will drive pharmacotherapy forward against unorthodox membrane protein targets. PMID:26863923

  11. Structures of membrane proteins

    PubMed Central

    Vinothkumar, Kutti R.; Henderson, Richard

    2010-01-01

    In reviewing the structures of membrane proteins determined up to the end of 2009, we present in words and pictures the most informative examples from each family. We group the structures together according to their function and architecture to provide an overview of the major principles and variations on the most common themes. The first structures, determined 20 years ago, were those of naturally abundant proteins with limited conformational variability, and each membrane protein structure determined was a major landmark. With the advent of complete genome sequences and efficient expression systems, there has been an explosion in the rate of membrane protein structure determination, with many classes represented. New structures are published every month and more than 150 unique membrane protein structures have been determined. This review analyses the reasons for this success, discusses the challenges that still lie ahead, and presents a concise summary of the key achievements with illustrated examples selected from each class. PMID:20667175

  12. Greening under high light or cold temperature affects the level of xanthophyll-cycle pigments, early light-inducible proteins, and light-harvesting polypeptides in wild-type barley and the chlorina f2 mutant

    PubMed

    Krol; Ivanov; Jansson; Kloppstech; Huner

    1999-05-01

    Etiolated seedlings of wild type and the chlorina f2 mutant of barley (Hordeum vulgare) were exposed to greening at either 5 degrees C or 20 degrees C and continuous illumination varying from 50 to 800 &mgr;mol m-2 s-1. Exposure to either moderate temperature and high light or low temperature and moderate light inhibited chlorophyll a and b accumulation in the wild type and in the f2 mutant. Continuous illumination under these greening conditions resulted in transient accumulations of zeaxanthin, concomitant transient decreases in violaxanthin, and fluctuations in the epoxidation state of the xanthophyll pool. Photoinhibition-induced xanthophyll-cycle activity was detectable after only 3 h of greening at 20 degrees C and 250 &mgr;mol m-2 s-1. Immunoblot analyses of the accumulation of the 14-kD early light-inducible protein but not the major (Lhcb2) or minor (Lhcb5) light-harvesting polypeptides demonstrated transient kinetics similar to those observed for zeaxanthin accumulation during greening at either 5 degrees C or 20 degrees C for both the wild type and the f2 mutant. Furthermore, greening of the f2 mutant at either 5 degrees C or 20 degrees C indicated that Lhcb2 is not essential for the regulation of the xanthophyll cycle in barley. These results are consistent with the thesis that early light-inducible proteins may bind zeaxanthin as well as other xanthophylls and dissipate excess light energy to protect the developing photosynthetic apparatus from excess excitation. We discuss the role of energy balance and photosystem II excitation pressure in the regulation of the xanthophyll cycle during chloroplast biogenesis in wild-type barley and the f2 mutant. PMID:10318697

  13. Greening under High Light or Cold Temperature Affects the Level of Xanthophyll-Cycle Pigments, Early Light-Inducible Proteins, and Light-Harvesting Polypeptides in Wild-Type Barley and the Chlorina f2 Mutant1

    PubMed Central

    Król, Marianna; Ivanov, Alexander G.; Jansson, Stefan; Kloppstech, Klaus; Huner, Norman P.A.

    1999-01-01

    Etiolated seedlings of wild type and the chlorina f2 mutant of barley (Hordeum vulgare) were exposed to greening at either 5°C or 20°C and continuous illumination varying from 50 to 800 μmol m−2 s−1. Exposure to either moderate temperature and high light or low temperature and moderate light inhibited chlorophyll a and b accumulation in the wild type and in the f2 mutant. Continuous illumination under these greening conditions resulted in transient accumulations of zeaxanthin, concomitant transient decreases in violaxanthin, and fluctuations in the epoxidation state of the xanthophyll pool. Photoinhibition-induced xanthophyll-cycle activity was detectable after only 3 h of greening at 20°C and 250 μmol m−2 s−1. Immunoblot analyses of the accumulation of the 14-kD early light-inducible protein but not the major (Lhcb2) or minor (Lhcb5) light-harvesting polypeptides demonstrated transient kinetics similar to those observed for zeaxanthin accumulation during greening at either 5°C or 20°C for both the wild type and the f2 mutant. Furthermore, greening of the f2 mutant at either 5°C or 20°C indicated that Lhcb2 is not essential for the regulation of the xanthophyll cycle in barley. These results are consistent with the thesis that early light-inducible proteins may bind zeaxanthin as well as other xanthophylls and dissipate excess light energy to protect the developing photosynthetic apparatus from excess excitation. We discuss the role of energy balance and photosystem II excitation pressure in the regulation of the xanthophyll cycle during chloroplast biogenesis in wild-type barley and the f2 mutant. PMID:10318697

  14. Outer membrane protein purification.

    PubMed

    Arigita, C; Jiskoot, W; Graaf, M R; Kersten, G F

    2001-01-01

    The major outer membrane proteins (OMPs) from Neisseria meningitidis, which are expressed at high levels, are subdivided in five classes based on molecular weight (1,2) (see Table 1). Table 1 Major Meningococcal Outer-Membrane Proteins Outer-membrane proteins Name Molecular maass Function/characteristics Class 1 PorA 44-47 kDa Porin Class 2/3 PorB 37-42 kDa Porin Class 4 Rmp Reductionmodifiableprotein, unknown Class 5 Opa 26-30 kDa Adhesion,opacity protein Opc 25 kDa Invasion, opacity protein Iron-regulated proteins Mirp 37 kDa Iron acquisition (?);majoriron-regulatedprotein FrpB 70 kDa Ferric enterobactin receptor (also FetA) Adapted from ref. (1). PMID:21336748

  15. In Vivo Identification of Photosystem II Light Harvesting Complexes Interacting with PHOTOSYSTEM II SUBUNIT S1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Gerotto, Caterina; Franchin, Cinzia; Arrigoni, Giorgio; Morosinotto, Tomas

    2015-01-01

    Light is the primary energy source for photosynthetic organisms, but in excess, it can generate reactive oxygen species and lead to cell damage. Plants evolved multiple mechanisms to modulate light use efficiency depending on illumination intensity to thrive in a highly dynamic natural environment. One of the main mechanisms for protection from intense illumination is the dissipation of excess excitation energy as heat, a process called nonphotochemical quenching. In plants, nonphotochemical quenching induction depends on the generation of a pH gradient across thylakoid membranes and on the presence of a protein called PHOTOSYSTEM II SUBUNIT S (PSBS). Here, we generated Physcomitrella patens lines expressing histidine-tagged PSBS that were exploited to purify the native protein by affinity chromatography. The mild conditions used in the purification allowed copurifying PSBS with its interactors, which were identified by mass spectrometry analysis to be mainly photosystem II antenna proteins, such as LIGHT-HARVESTING COMPLEX B (LHCB). PSBS interaction with other proteins appears to be promiscuous and not exclusive, although the major proteins copurified with PSBS were components of the LHCII trimers (LHCB3 and LHCBM). These results provide evidence of a physical interaction between specific photosystem II light-harvesting complexes and PSBS in the thylakoids, suggesting that these subunits are major players in heat dissipation of excess energy. PMID:26069151

  16. Photophysics in single light-harvesting complexes II: from micelle to native nanodisks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gruber, J. Michael; Scheidelaar, Stefan; van Roon, Henny; Dekker, Jan P.; Killian, J. Antoinette; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-02-01

    Most photosynthetic pigment-protein complexes of algae and higher plants are integral membrane proteins and are thus usually isolated in the presence of detergent to provide a hydrophobic interface and prevent aggregation. It was recently shown that the styrene maleic acid (SMA) copolymer can be used instead to solubilize and isolate protein complexes with their native lipid environment into nanodisk particles. We isolated LHCII complexes in SMA and compared their photophysics with trimeric LHCII complexes in β-DM detergent micelles to understand the effect of the native environment on the function of light-harvesting antennae. The triplet state kinetics and the calculated relative absorption cross section of single complexes indicate the successful isolation of trimeric complexes in SMA nanodisks, confirming the trimeric structure as the likely native configuration. The survival time of complexes before they photobleach is increased in SMA compared to detergent which might be explained by a stabilizing effect of the co-purified lipids in nanodisks. We furthermore find an unquenched fluorescence lifetime of 3.5 ns for LHCII in SMA nanodisks which coincides with detergent isolated complexes and notably differs from 2 ns typically found in native thylakoid structures. A large dynamic range of partially quenched complexes both in detergent micelles and lipid nanodisks is demonstrated by correlating the fluorescence lifetime with the intensity and likely reflects the conformational freedom of these complexes. This further supports the hypothesis that fluorescence intermittency is an intrinsic property of LHCII that may be involved in excess energy dissipation in native light-harvesting.

  17. Quantum mechanical light harvesting mechanisms in photosynthesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scholes, Gregory

    2012-02-01

    More than 10 million billion photons of light strike a leaf each second. Incredibly, almost every red-coloured photon is captured by chlorophyll pigments and initiates steps to plant growth. Last year we reported that marine algae use quantum mechanics in order to optimize photosynthesis [1], a process essential to its survival. These and other insights from the natural world promise to revolutionize our ability to harness the power of the sun. In a recent review [2] we described the principles learned from studies of various natural antenna complexes and suggested how to utilize that knowledge to shape future technologies. We forecast the need to develop ways to direct and regulate excitation energy flow using molecular organizations that facilitate feedback and control--not easy given that the energy is only stored for a billionth of a second. In this presentation I will describe new results that explain the observation and meaning of quantum-coherent energy transfer. [4pt] [1] Elisabetta Collini, Cathy Y. Wong, Krystyna E. Wilk, Paul M. G. Curmi, Paul Brumer, and Gregory D. Scholes, ``Coherently wired light-harvesting in photosynthetic marine algae at ambient temperature'' Nature 463, 644-648 (2010).[0pt] [2] Gregory D. Scholes, Graham R. Fleming, Alexandra Olaya-Castro and Rienk van Grondelle, ``Lessons from nature about solar light harvesting'' Nature Chem. 3, 763-774 (2011).

  18. Protein mediated membrane adhesion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carlson, Andreas; Mahadevan, L.

    2015-05-01

    Adhesion in the context of mechanical attachment, signaling, and movement in cellular dynamics is mediated by the kinetic interactions between membrane-embedded proteins in an aqueous environment. Here, we present a minimal theoretical framework for the dynamics of membrane adhesion that accounts for the kinetics of protein binding, the elastic deformation of the membrane, and the hydrodynamics of squeeze flow in the membrane gap. We analyze the resulting equations using scaling estimates to characterize the spatiotemporal features of the adhesive patterning and corroborate them using numerical simulations. In addition to characterizing aspects of cellular dynamics, our results might also be applicable to a range of phenomena in physical chemistry and materials science where flow, deformation, and kinetics are coupled to each other in slender geometries.

  19. Membrane Protein Prediction Methods

    PubMed Central

    Punta, Marco; Forrest, Lucy R.; Bigelow, Henry; Kernytsky, Andrew; Liu, Jinfeng; Rost, Burkhard

    2007-01-01

    We survey computational approaches that tackle membrane protein structure and function prediction. While describing the main ideas that have led to the development of the most relevant and novel methods, we also discuss pitfalls, provide practical hints and highlight the challenges that remain. The methods covered include: sequence alignment, motif search, functional residue identification, transmembrane segment and protein topology predictions, homology and ab initio modeling. Overall, predictions of functional and structural features of membrane proteins are improving, although progress is hampered by the limited amount of high-resolution experimental information available. While predictions of transmembrane segments and protein topology rank among the most accurate methods in computational biology, more attention and effort will be required in the future to ameliorate database search, homology and ab initio modeling. PMID:17367718

  20. Membrane Bending by Protein Crowding

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stachowiak, Jeanne

    2014-03-01

    From endosomes and synaptic vesicles to the cristae of the mitochondria and the annulus of the nuclear pore, highly curved membranes are fundamental to the structure and physiology of living cells. The established view is that specific families of proteins are able to bend membranes by binding to them. For example, inherently curved proteins are thought to impose their structure on the membrane surface, while membrane-binding proteins with hydrophobic motifs are thought to insert into the membrane like wedges, driving curvature. However, computational models have recently revealed that these mechanisms would require specialized membrane-bending proteins to occupy nearly 100% of a curved membrane surface, an improbable physiological situation given the immense density and diversity of membrane-bound proteins, and the low expression levels of these specialized proteins within curved regions of the membrane. How then does curvature arise within the complex and crowded environment of cellular membranes? Our recent work using proteins involved in clathrin-mediated endocytosis, as well as engineered protein-lipid interactions, has suggested a new hypothesis - that lateral pressure generated by collisions between membrane-bound proteins can drive membrane bending. Specifically, by correlating membrane bending with quantitative optical measurements of protein density on synthetic membrane surfaces and simple physical models of collisions among membrane-bound proteins, we have demonstrated that protein-protein steric interactions can drive membrane curvature. These findings suggest that a simple imbalance in the concentration of membrane-bound proteins across a membrane surface can drive a membrane to bend, providing an efficient mechanism by which essentially any protein can contribute to shaping membranes.

  1. Light-Induced Infrared Difference Spectroscopy in the Investigation of Light Harvesting Complexes.

    PubMed

    Mezzetti, Alberto

    2015-01-01

    Light-induced infrared difference spectroscopy (IR-DS) has been used, especially in the last decade, to investigate early photophysics, energy transfer and photoprotection mechanisms in isolated and membrane-bound light harvesting complexes (LHCs). The technique has the definite advantage to give information on how the pigments and the other constituents of the biological system (proteins, membranes, etc.) evolve during a given photoreaction. Different static and time-resolved approaches have been used. Compared to the application of IR-DS to photosynthetic Reaction Centers (RCs), however, IR-DS applied to LHCs is still in an almost pioneering age: very often sophisticated techniques (step-scan FTIR, ultrafast IR) or data analysis strategies (global analysis, target analysis, multivariate curve resolution) are needed. In addition, band assignment is usually more complicated than in RCs. The results obtained on the studied systems (chromatophores and RC-LHC supercomplexes from purple bacteria; Peridinin-Chlorophyll-a-Proteins from dinoflagellates; isolated LHCII from plants; thylakoids; Orange Carotenoid Protein from cyanobacteria) are summarized. A description of the different IR-DS techniques used is also provided, and the most stimulating perspectives are also described. Especially if used synergically with other biophysical techniques, light-induced IR-DS represents an important tool in the investigation of photophysical/photochemical reactions in LHCs and LHC-containing systems. PMID:26151118

  2. Solvation Effect of Bacteriochlorophyll Excitons in Light-Harvesting Complex LH2

    PubMed Central

    Urbonienė, V.; Vrublevskaja, O.; Trinkunas, G.; Gall, A.; Robert, B.; Valkunas, L.

    2007-01-01

    We have characterized the influence of the protein environment on the spectral properties of the bacteriochlorophyll (Bchl) molecules of the peripheral light-harvesting (or LH2) complex from Rhodobacter sphaeroides. The spectral density functions of the pigments responsible for the 800 and 850 nm electronic transitions were determined from the temperature dependence of the Bchl absorption spectra in different environments (detergent micelles and native membranes). The spectral density function is virtually independent of the hydrophobic support that the protein experiences. The reorganization energy for the B850 Bchls is 220 cm−1, which is almost twice that of the B800 Bchls, and its Huang-Rhys factor reaches 8.4. Around the transition point temperature, and at higher temperatures, both the static spectral inhomogeneity and the resonance interactions become temperature-dependent. The inhomogeneous distribution function of the transitions exhibits less temperature dependence when LH2 is embedded in membranes, suggesting that the lipid phase protects the protein. However, the temperature dependence of the fluorescence spectra of LH2 cannot be fitted using the same parameters determined from the analysis of the absorption spectra. Correct fitting requires the lowest exciton states to be additionally shifted to the red, suggesting the reorganization of the exciton spectrum. PMID:17513366

  3. Accessing exciton transport in light-harvesting structures with plasmonic nanotip

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saikin, Semion K.; Feist, Johannes; Homer Reid, M. T.; Lukin, Mikhail D.; Aspuru-Guzik, Alan

    2012-02-01

    Natural light-harvesting complexes, such as that of plant cells or photosynthetic bacteria, are considered as possible prototypes for artificially designed solar cell materials. In these structures the energy of light absorbed by a peripheral antenna is transmitted very efficiently in a form of excitons to a reaction center. Usually, information about the exciton transport is obtained from time-resolved nonlinear optical experiments where the frequencies of a pump and a probe fields select particular electronic transitions in the light-harvesting complex. We explore a complimentary setup utilizing a plasmonic nanotip as a local sub-wavelength probe of excitation dynamics. As specific examples we consider an LHII complex involved in the light-harvesting process of purple bacteria and a Fenna-Matthews-Olson pigment-protein complex of green-sulphur bacteria.

  4. Long range excitonic transport in a biomimetic system inspired by the bacterial light-harvesting apparatus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harel, Elad

    2012-05-01

    Photosynthesis, the process by which energy from sunlight drives cellular metabolism, relies on a unique organization of light-harvesting and reaction center complexes. Recently, the organization of light-harvesting LH2 complexes and dimeric reaction center-light-harvesting I-PufX core complexes in membranes of purple non-sulfur bacteria was revealed by atomic force microscopy [S. Bahatyrova et al., Nature (London) 430, 1058 (2004)]. Here, we discuss optimal exciton transfer in a biomimetic system closely modeled on the structure of LH2 and its organization within the membrane using a Markovian quantum model with dissipation and trapping added phenomenologically. In a deliberate manner, we neglect the high level detail of the bacterial light-harvesting complex and its interaction with the phonon bath in order to elucidate a set of design principles that may be incorporated in artificial pigment-scaffold constructs in a supramolecular assembly. We show that our scheme reproduces many of the most salient features found in their natural counterpart and may be largely explained by simple electrostatic considerations. Most importantly, we show that quantum effects act primarily to enforce robustness with respect to spatial and spectral disorder between and within complexes. The implications of such an arrangement are discussed in the context of biomimetic photosynthetic analogs capable of transferring energy efficiently across tens to hundreds of nanometers.

  5. Long range excitonic transport in a biomimetic system inspired by the bacterial light-harvesting apparatus

    SciTech Connect

    Harel, Elad

    2012-05-07

    Photosynthesis, the process by which energy from sunlight drives cellular metabolism, relies on a unique organization of light-harvesting and reaction center complexes. Recently, the organization of light-harvesting LH2 complexes and dimeric reaction center-light-harvesting I-PufX core complexes in membranes of purple non-sulfur bacteria was revealed by atomic force microscopy [S. Bahatyrova et al., Nature (London) 430, 1058 (2004)]. Here, we discuss optimal exciton transfer in a biomimetic system closely modeled on the structure of LH2 and its organization within the membrane using a Markovian quantum model with dissipation and trapping added phenomenologically. In a deliberate manner, we neglect the high level detail of the bacterial light-harvesting complex and its interaction with the phonon bath in order to elucidate a set of design principles that may be incorporated in artificial pigment-scaffold constructs in a supramolecular assembly. We show that our scheme reproduces many of the most salient features found in their natural counterpart and may be largely explained by simple electrostatic considerations. Most importantly, we show that quantum effects act primarily to enforce robustness with respect to spatial and spectral disorder between and within complexes. The implications of such an arrangement are discussed in the context of biomimetic photosynthetic analogs capable of transferring energy efficiently across tens to hundreds of nanometers.

  6. Differential Mobility of Pigment-Protein Complexes in Granal and Agranal Thylakoid Membranes of C3 and C4 Plants1[OA

    PubMed Central

    Kirchhoff, Helmut; Sharpe, Richard M.; Herbstova, Miroslava; Yarbrough, Robert; Edwards, Gerald E.

    2013-01-01

    The photosynthetic performance of plants is crucially dependent on the mobility of the molecular complexes that catalyze the conversion of sunlight to metabolic energy equivalents in the thylakoid membrane network inside chloroplasts. The role of the extensive folding of thylakoid membranes leading to structural differentiation into stacked grana regions and unstacked stroma lamellae for diffusion-based processes of the photosynthetic machinery is poorly understood. This study examines, to our knowledge for the first time, the mobility of photosynthetic pigment-protein complexes in unstacked thylakoid regions in the C3 plant Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) and agranal bundle sheath chloroplasts of the C4 plants sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) and maize (Zea mays) by the fluorescence recovery after photobleaching technique. In unstacked thylakoid membranes, more than 50% of the protein complexes are mobile, whereas this number drops to about 20% in stacked grana regions. The higher molecular mobility in unstacked thylakoid regions is explained by a lower protein-packing density compared with stacked grana regions. It is postulated that thylakoid membrane stacking to form grana leads to protein crowding that impedes lateral diffusion processes but is required for efficient light harvesting of the modularly organized photosystem II and its light-harvesting antenna system. In contrast, the arrangement of the photosystem I light-harvesting complex I in separate units in unstacked thylakoid membranes does not require dense protein packing, which is advantageous for protein diffusion. PMID:23148078

  7. Preparation of native and recombinant light-harvesting chlorophyll-a/b complex.

    PubMed

    Rühle, Wolfgang; Paulsen, Harald

    2011-01-01

    Procedures to isolate native light-harvesting chlorophyll-a/b complex (LHCIIb) and to reconstitute recombinant LHCIIb are described. Separation of trimeric from monomeric forms and free pigment by sucrose density-gradient ultracentrifugation can be applied to both native and reconstituted complexes. The preparations are characterized by their pigment composition, protein pattern, and spectral properties. PMID:20960126

  8. Preparation of native and recombinant light-harvesting chlorophyll-a/b complex.

    PubMed

    Rühle, Wolfgang; Paulsen, Harald

    2004-01-01

    Procedures to isolate native light-harvesting chlorophyll-a/b complex (LHCIIb) and to reconstitute recombinant LHCIIb are described. Separation of trimeric from monomeric forms and free pigment by sucrose density-gradient ultracentrifugation can be applied to both native and reconstituted complexes. The preparations are characterized by their pigment composition, protein pattern and spectral properties. PMID:15187272

  9. Multiscale model of light harvesting by photosystem II in plants

    PubMed Central

    Amarnath, Kapil; Bennett, Doran I. G.; Schneider, Anna R.; Fleming, Graham R.

    2016-01-01

    The first step of photosynthesis in plants is the absorption of sunlight by pigments in the antenna complexes of photosystem II (PSII), followed by transfer of the nascent excitation energy to the reaction centers, where long-term storage as chemical energy is initiated. Quantum mechanical mechanisms must be invoked to explain the transport of excitation within individual antenna. However, it is unclear how these mechanisms influence transfer across assemblies of antenna and thus the photochemical yield at reaction centers in the functional thylakoid membrane. Here, we model light harvesting at the several-hundred-nanometer scale of the PSII membrane, while preserving the dominant quantum effects previously observed in individual complexes. We show that excitation moves diffusively through the antenna with a diffusion length of 50 nm until it reaches a reaction center, where charge separation serves as an energetic trap. The diffusion length is a single parameter that incorporates the enhancing effect of excited state delocalization on individual rates of energy transfer as well as the complex kinetics that arise due to energy transfer and loss by decay to the ground state. The diffusion length determines PSII’s high quantum efficiency in ideal conditions, as well as how it is altered by the membrane morphology and the closure of reaction centers. We anticipate that the model will be useful in resolving the nonphotochemical quenching mechanisms that PSII employs in conditions of high light stress. PMID:26787911

  10. Early events in the biosynthesis and assembly of the cyanobacterial light-harvesting system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson, Lamont

    1996-02-01

    The cyanobacteria are photosynthetic procaryotes that employ a mechanism of photosynthesis which is essentially identical to the systems found in plant chloroplasts and the eukaryotic green algae. Cyanobacteria can drive photosynthesis with light energy from a broad region of the visible spectrum (500 - 650 nm wavelength) that is not available to plants and green algae, which are limited to the narrow band of light energy that is absorbed by chlorophyll (660-680 nm). The light-harvesting capacity of the cyanobacteria is a function of a complex protein structure that resides on the surface of the photosynthetic membrane in contact with the PSII chlorophyll reaction centers. This light-harvesting complex is called a phycobilisome and functions as a protein scaffold for a rigid array of chromophores that absorbs light energy and transfers it to chlorophyll. The chromophores are linear tetrapyrroles (the bilins) that are covalently attached to the biliproteins, which comprise 80 - 85% of the total phycobilisome mass. There are three major classes of spectrally distinct biliproteins [phycoerythrin (PE), (lambda) max equals 565 nm; phycocyanin (PC), (lambda) max equals 617 nm; and allophycocyanin (AP), (lambda) max equals 650 nm] and their spatial organization within the phycobilisome creates an array of donor and acceptor chromophores that is optimized for resonance energy transfer to chlorophyll on a picosecond timescale and at close to 100% efficiency. The cyanobacteria can exert control over the biliprotein composition of the phycobilisomes in response to both light quality and light quantity, and they do so primarily by light-responsive transcription control mechanisms. The biosynthesis and assembly of a phycobilisome is an interesting example of self-assembly in a complex protein system. A phycobilisome from Synechocystis sp. strain 6701 can contain 400 proteins derived from a repertoire of 16 different polypeptides that includes the (alpha) and (beta) subunits for

  11. Tracking Membrane Protein Association in Model Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Reffay, Myriam; Gambin, Yann; Benabdelhak, Houssain; Phan, Gilles; Taulier, Nicolas; Ducruix, Arnaud; Hodges, Robert S.; Urbach, Wladimir

    2009-01-01

    Membrane proteins are essential in the exchange processes of cells. In spite of great breakthrough in soluble proteins studies, membrane proteins structures, functions and interactions are still a challenge because of the difficulties related to their hydrophobic properties. Most of the experiments are performed with detergent-solubilized membrane proteins. However widely used micellar systems are far from the biological two-dimensions membrane. The development of new biomimetic membrane systems is fundamental to tackle this issue. We present an original approach that combines the Fluorescence Recovery After fringe Pattern Photobleaching technique and the use of a versatile sponge phase that makes it possible to extract crucial informations about interactions between membrane proteins embedded in the bilayers of a sponge phase. The clear advantage lies in the ability to adjust at will the spacing between two adjacent bilayers. When the membranes are far apart, the only possible interactions occur laterally between proteins embedded within the same bilayer, whereas when membranes get closer to each other, interactions between proteins embedded in facing membranes may occur as well. After validating our approach on the streptavidin-biotinylated peptide complex, we study the interactions between two membrane proteins, MexA and OprM, from a Pseudomonas aeruginosa efflux pump. The mode of interaction, the size of the protein complex and its potential stoichiometry are determined. In particular, we demonstrate that: MexA is effectively embedded in the bilayer; MexA and OprM do not interact laterally but can form a complex if they are embedded in opposite bilayers; the population of bound proteins is at its maximum for bilayers separated by a distance of about 200 Å, which is the periplasmic thickness of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. We also show that the MexA-OprM association is enhanced when the position and orientation of the protein is restricted by the bilayers. We

  12. Reconstitution of chlorophyll a/b light-harvesting complexes: xanthophyll-dependent assembly and energy transfer

    SciTech Connect

    Plumley, F.G.; Schmidt, G.W.

    1987-01-01

    A method for in vitro reconstitution of the chlorophyll a/b light-harvesting complex from LiDodSO/sub 4//heat-denatured or acetone-extracted photosynthetic membranes has been developed. Characterization of the minimum components necessary for the functional organization or pigments in these membrane complexes reveals that xanthophylls are essential structural components.

  13. Proteins causing membrane fouling in membrane bioreactors.

    PubMed

    Miyoshi, Taro; Nagai, Yuhei; Aizawa, Tomoyasu; Kimura, Katsuki; Watanabe, Yoshimasa

    2015-01-01

    In this study, the details of proteins causing membrane fouling in membrane bioreactors (MBRs) treating real municipal wastewater were investigated. Two separate pilot-scale MBRs were continuously operated under significantly different operating conditions; one MBR was a submerged type whereas the other was a side-stream type. The submerged and side-stream MBRs were operated for 20 and 10 days, respectively. At the end of continuous operation, the foulants were extracted from the fouled membranes. The proteins contained in the extracted foulants were enriched by using the combination of crude concentration with an ultrafiltration membrane and trichloroacetic acid precipitation, and then separated by two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (2D-PAGE). The N-terminal amino acid sequencing analysis of the proteins which formed intensive spots on the 2D-PAGE gels allowed us to partially identify one protein (OmpA family protein originated from genus Brevundimonas or Riemerella anatipestifer) from the foulant obtained from the submerged MBR, and two proteins (OprD and OprF originated from genus Pseudomonas) from that obtained from the side-stream MBR. Despite the significant difference in operating conditions of the two MBRs, all proteins identified in this study belong to β-barrel protein. These findings strongly suggest the importance of β-barrel proteins in developing membrane fouling in MBRs. PMID:26360742

  14. Direct observation of sub-picosecond equilibration of excitation energy in the light-harvesting antenna of Rhodospirillum rubrum.

    PubMed Central

    Visser, H M; Somsen, O J; van Mourik, F; Lin, S; van Stokkum, I H; van Grondelle, R

    1995-01-01

    Excitation energy transfer in the light-harvesting antenna of Rhodospirillum rubrum was studied at room temperature using sub-picosecond transient absorption measurements. Upon excitation of Rs. rubrum membranes with a 200 fs, 600 nm laser flash in the Qx transition of the bacteriochlorophyll-a (BChl-a) absorption, the induced transient absorption changes in the Qy region were monitored. In Rs. rubrum membranes the observed delta OD spectrum exhibits ground state bleaching, excited state absorption and stimulated emission. Fast Qx --> Qy relaxation occurs in approximately 100-200 fs as reflected by the building up of stimulated emission. An important observation is that the zero-crossing of the transient difference absorption (delta OD) spectrum exhibits a dynamic redshift from 863 to 875 nm that can be described with by a single exponential with 325 fs time constant. The shape of the transient difference spectrum observed in a purified subunit of the core light-harvesting antenna, B820, consisting of only a single interacting pair of BChl-as, is similar to the spectrum observed in Rs. rubrum membranes and clearly different from the spectrum of BChl-a in a protein/detergent mixture. In the B820 and monomeric BChl-a preparations the 100-200 fs Qx --> Qy relaxation is still observed, but the dynamic redshift of the delta OD spectrum is absent. The spectral kinetics observed in the Rs. rubrum membranes are interpreted in terms of the dynamics of excitation equilibration among the antenna subunits that constitute the inhomogeneously broadened antenna. A simulation of this process using a set of reasonable physical parameters is consistent with an average hopping time in the core light harvesting of 220-270 fs, resulting in an average single-site excitation lifetime of 50-70 fs. The observed rate of this equilibration process is in reasonable agreement with earlier estimations for the hopping time from more indirect measurements. The implications of the findings for the

  15. Direct observation of sub-picosecond equilibration of excitation energy in the light-harvesting antenna of Rhodospirillum rubrum.

    PubMed

    Visser, H M; Somsen, O J; van Mourik, F; Lin, S; van Stokkum, I H; van Grondelle, R

    1995-09-01

    Excitation energy transfer in the light-harvesting antenna of Rhodospirillum rubrum was studied at room temperature using sub-picosecond transient absorption measurements. Upon excitation of Rs. rubrum membranes with a 200 fs, 600 nm laser flash in the Qx transition of the bacteriochlorophyll-a (BChl-a) absorption, the induced transient absorption changes in the Qy region were monitored. In Rs. rubrum membranes the observed delta OD spectrum exhibits ground state bleaching, excited state absorption and stimulated emission. Fast Qx --> Qy relaxation occurs in approximately 100-200 fs as reflected by the building up of stimulated emission. An important observation is that the zero-crossing of the transient difference absorption (delta OD) spectrum exhibits a dynamic redshift from 863 to 875 nm that can be described with by a single exponential with 325 fs time constant. The shape of the transient difference spectrum observed in a purified subunit of the core light-harvesting antenna, B820, consisting of only a single interacting pair of BChl-as, is similar to the spectrum observed in Rs. rubrum membranes and clearly different from the spectrum of BChl-a in a protein/detergent mixture. In the B820 and monomeric BChl-a preparations the 100-200 fs Qx --> Qy relaxation is still observed, but the dynamic redshift of the delta OD spectrum is absent. The spectral kinetics observed in the Rs. rubrum membranes are interpreted in terms of the dynamics of excitation equilibration among the antenna subunits that constitute the inhomogeneously broadened antenna. A simulation of this process using a set of reasonable physical parameters is consistent with an average hopping time in the core light harvesting of 220-270 fs, resulting in an average single-site excitation lifetime of 50-70 fs. The observed rate of this equilibration process is in reasonable agreement with earlier estimations for the hopping time from more indirect measurements. The implications of the findings for the

  16. Polymer light harvesting composites for optoelectronic applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Sam-Shajing; Wang, Dan

    2015-09-01

    Polymer based optoelectronic composites and thin film devices exhibit great potential in space applications due to their lightweight, flexible shape, high photon absorption coefficients, and robust radiation tolerance in space environment. Polymer/dye composites appear promising for optoelectronics applications due to potential enhancements in both light harvesting and charge separation. In this study, the optoelectronic properties of a series of molecular dyes paired with a conjugated polymer Poly(3-hexylthiophene-2,5-diyl) (P3HT) were investigated. Specifically, the solution PL quenching coefficients (Ksv) of dye/polymer follows a descending order from dyes of Chloro(protoporphyrinato)iron(III) (Hemin), Protoporphyrin, to meso-Tetra(4-carboxyphenyl)porphine (TCPP). In optoelectronic devices made of the P3HT/dye/PCBM composites, the short circuit current densities Jsc as well as the overall power conversion efficiencies (PCE) also follow a descending order from Hemin, Protoporphyrin, to TCPP, despite Hemin exhibits the intermediate polymer/dye LUMO (lowest unoccupied molecular orbital) offset and lowest absorption coefficient as compared to the other two dyes, i.e., the cell optoelectronic efficiency did not follow the LUMO offsets which are the key driving forces for the photo induced charge separations. This study reveals that too large LUMO offset or electron transfer driving force may result in smaller PL quenching and optoelectronic conversion efficiency, this could be another experimental evidence for the Marcus electron transfer model, particularly for the Marcus `inverted region'. It appears an optimum electron transfer driving force or strong PL quenching appears more critical than absorption coefficient for optoelectronic conversion devices.

  17. Modulation of the light-harvesting chlorophyll antenna size in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii by TLA1 gene over-expression and RNA interference

    PubMed Central

    Mitra, Mautusi; Kirst, Henning; Dewez, David; Melis, Anastasios

    2012-01-01

    Truncated light-harvesting antenna 1 (TLA1) is a nuclear gene proposed to regulate the chlorophyll (Chl) antenna size in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. The Chl antenna size of the photosystems and the chloroplast ultrastructure were manipulated upon TLA1 gene over-expression and RNAi downregulation. The TLA1 over-expressing lines possessed a larger chlorophyll antenna size for both photosystems and contained greater levels of Chl b per cell relative to the wild type. Conversely, TLA1 RNAi transformants had a smaller Chl antenna size for both photosystems and lower levels of Chl b per cell. Western blot analyses of the TLA1 over-expressing and RNAi transformants showed that modulation of TLA1 gene expression was paralleled by modulation in the expression of light-harvesting protein, reaction centre D1 and D2, and VIPP1 genes. Transmission electron microscopy showed that modulation of TLA1 gene expression impacts the organization of thylakoid membranes in the chloroplast. Over-expressing lines showed well-defined grana, whereas RNAi transformants possessed loosely held together and more stroma-exposed thylakoids. Cell fractionation suggested localization of the TLA1 protein in the inner chloroplast envelope and potentially in association with nascent thylakoid membranes, indicating a role in Chl antenna assembly and thylakoid membrane biogenesis. The results provide a mechanistic understanding of the Chl antenna size regulation by the TLA1 gene. PMID:23148270

  18. Microtechnologies for membrane protein studies

    PubMed Central

    Suzuki, Hiroaki

    2008-01-01

    Despite the rapid and enormous progress in biotechnologies, the biochemical analysis of membrane proteins is still a difficult task. The presence of the large hydrophobic region buried in the lipid bilayer membrane (transmembrane domain) makes it difficult to analyze membrane proteins in standard assays developed for water-soluble proteins. To handle membrane proteins, the lipid bilayer membrane may be used as a platform to sustain their functionalities. Relatively slow progress in developing micro total analysis systems (μTAS) for membrane protein analysis directly reflects the difficulty of handling lipid membranes, which is a common problem in bulk measurement technologies. Nonetheless, researchers are continuing to develop efficient and sensitive analytical microsystems for the study of membrane proteins. Here, we review the latest developments, which enable detection of events caused by membrane proteins, such as ion channel current, membrane transport, and receptor/ligand interaction, by utilizing microfabricated structures. High-throughput and highly sensitive detection systems for membrane proteins are now becoming a realistic goal. Although most of these systems are still in the early stages of development, we believe this field will become one of the most important applications of μTAS for pharmaceutical and clinical screenings as well as for basic biochemical research. PMID:18335213

  19. Formation of the light-harvesting complex I (B870) of anoxygenic phototrophic purple bacteria.

    PubMed

    Drews, G

    1996-09-01

    The light-harvesting (LH) complex I (B870) of anoxygenic photosynthetic purple bacteria is the oligomeric form of its subunit B820 consisting of the low-molecular-weight polypeptides alpha, beta, bacteriochlorophyll (BChl), and carotenoids in the stoichiometric ratio [alpha1 beta1 (BChl2) Crt1-2]n. LHI surrounds the photochemical reaction center (RC). The major absorption band of the LHI complex is species-specific and is found at 870-890 nm; those of the subunit and the monomeric BChl a (dissolved in methanol) absorb at 820 and 770 nm, respectively. The isolated LHI complex can be reversibly dissociated to the B820 subunit or to the polypeptides and pigments by addition of detergents. Reconstitution of the B820 or the functional B870 complex is still possible after partial truncation of the N- or C-terminal regions of the alpha- or beta-polypeptide or of the beta-polypeptide only. The minimal structural requirements for reconstitution of a spectrally wild-type form after truncation of the polypeptides and/or modifications of the BChl molecule are described. The insertion of the LHIalpha- and LHIbeta-polypeptides into the membrane and the in vivo assembly of LHI, studied in a cell-free system and in whole cells of Rhodobacter capsulatus, depend on the primary structures of both polypeptides, BChl, the chaperones DnaK and GroEL, membrane-bound proteins, and energized membranes. Exchanges, deletions, or insertions of amino acyl residues, especially in the conserved region of the N-terminus of the LHIalpha-polypeptide, prevent or reduce the efficiency and stability of the LHI assembly. Therefore, reconstitution of LHI in a detergent micelle does not exactly reproduce the formation of the LHI complex in the photosynthetic membrane in vivo. The N-terminal domains play a crucial role in the formation of the oligomeric protein scaffold and of the pigment array. Facultatively phototrophic bacteria such as Rhodospirillum (Rsp.) rubrum or Rhodobacter (Rba.) capsulatus can

  20. Structure and dynamics of photosystem II light-harvesting complex revealed by high-resolution FTICR mass spectrometric proteome analysis.

    PubMed

    Galetskiy, Dmitry; Susnea, Iuliana; Reiser, Verena; Adamska, Iwona; Przybylski, Michael

    2008-07-01

    Structure and dynamics of membrane-bound light-harvesting pigment-protein complexes (LHCs), which collect and transmit light energy for photosynthesis and thereby play an essential role in the regulation of photosynthesis and photoprotection, were identified and characterized using high-resolution Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry (FTICR-MS). LHCs from photosystem II (LHCII) were isolated from the thylakoid membrane of Arabidopsis thaliana leaves after light stress treatment using sucrose density gradient centrifugation, and separated by gel-filtration into LHCII subcomplexes. Using reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography and two-dimensional (2D) gel electrophoresis, the LHCII proteins, Lhcb1-6 and fibrillins, were efficiently separated and identified by FTICR-MS. Some of the LHCII subcomplexes were shown to migrate from photosystem II to photosystem I as a result of short-term adaptation to changes in light intensity. In the mobile LHCII subcomplexes, decreased levels of fibrillins and a modified composition of LHCII protein isoforms were identified compared to the tightly bound LHCII subcomplexes. In addition, FTICR-MS analysis revealed several oxidative modifications of LHCII proteins. A number of protein spots in 2D gels were found to contain a mixture of proteins, illustrating the feasibility of high-resolution mass spectrometry to identify proteins that remain unseparated in 2D gels even upon extended pH gradients. PMID:18455927

  1. Proteins interacting with Membranes: Protein Sorting and Membrane Shaping

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Callan-Jones, Andrew

    2015-03-01

    Membrane-bound transport in cells requires generating membrane curvature. In addition, transport is selective, in order to establish spatial gradients of membrane components in the cell. The mechanisms underlying cell membrane shaping by proteins and the influence of curvature on membrane composition are active areas of study in cell biophysics. In vitro approaches using Giant Unilamellar Vesicles (GUVs) are a useful tool to identify the physical mechanisms that drive sorting of membrane components and membrane shape change by proteins. I will present recent work on the curvature sensing and generation of IRSp53, a protein belonging to the BAR family, whose members, sharing a banana-shaped backbone, are involved in endocytosis. Pulling membrane tubes with 10-100 nm radii from GUVs containing encapsulated IRSp53 have, unexpectedly, revealed a non-monotonic dependence of the protein concentration on the tube as a function of curvature. Experiments also show that bound proteins alter the tube mechanics and that protein phase separation along the tube occurs at low tensions. I will present accompanying theoretical work that can explain these findings based on the competition between the protein's intrinsic curvature and the effective rigidity of a membrane-protein patch.

  2. Electronic Energy transfer in light-harvesting antenna complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hossein-Nejad, Hoda

    The studies presented in this thesis explore electronic energy transfer (EET) in light-harvesting antenna complexes and investigate the role of quantum coherence in EET. The dynamics of energy transfer are investigated in three distinct length scales and a different formulation of the exciton transport problem is applied at each scale. These scales include: the scale of a molecular dimer, the scale of a single protein and the scale of a molecular aggregate. The antenna protein phycoerythrin 545 (PE545) isolated from the photosynthetic cryptophyte algae Rhodomonas CS4 is specifically studied in two chapters of this thesis. It is found that formation of small aggregates delocalizes the excitation across chromophores of adjacent proteins, and that this delocalization has a dramatic effect in enhancing the rate of energy transfer between pigments. Furthermore, we investigate EET from a donor to an acceptor via an intermediate site and observe that interference of coherent pathways gives a finite correction to the transfer rate that is sensitively dependent on the nature of the vibrational interactions in the system. The statistical fluctuations of a system exhibiting EET are investigated in the final chapter. The techniques of non-equilibrium statistical mechanics are applied to investigate the steady-state of a typical system exhibiting EET that is perturbed out of equilibrium due to its interaction with a fluctuating bath.

  3. Proteomic characterization of the Rhodobacter sphaeroides 2.4.1 photosynthetic membrane: Identification of New Proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Zeng, Xiaohua; Roh, Jung Hyeob; Callister, Stephen J.; Tavano, Christine; Donohue, Timothy; Lipton, Mary S.; Kaplan, Samuel

    2007-10-01

    The intracytoplasmic membrane (ICM) system develops, upon induction, as a structure dedicated to the major events of bacterial photosynthesis, including harvesting light energy, primary charge separation, and electron transport. In this study, multi-chromatographic methods coupled with fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance (FTICR) mass spectrometer, combined with subcellular fractionation, was applied to an investigation of the supramolecular composition of the native photosynthetic membrane of Rhodobacter sphaeroides 2.4.1. A complete proteomic profile of the intracytoplasmic membranes was obtained and the results showed that the intracytoplasmic membranes are mainly composed of four photosynthetic membrane protein complexes, including light harvesting complexes I and II, the reaction center and cytochrome bc1, as well as two new membrane protein components, an unknown protein (RSP1760) and a possible alkane hydroxylase. Proteins necessary for various cellular functions, such as ATP synthesis, respiratory components, ABC transporters, protein translocation, and other proteins with unknown functions were also identified in association with the intracytoplasmic membranes. This study opens a new perspective on the characterization and understanding of the photosynthetic supramolecular complexes of R. sphaeroides, and their internal interactions as well as interactions with other proteins inside or outside the intracytoplasmic membranes.

  4. Effect of Protonation on the Secondary Structure and Orientation of Plant Light-Harvesting Complex II Studied by PM-IRRAS.

    PubMed

    Andreeva, Tonya D; Castano, Sabine; Krumova, Sashka; Lecomte, Sophie; Taneva, Stefka G

    2015-10-27

    The major light-harvesting pigment-protein complex of photosystem II, LHCII, has a crucial role in the distribution of the light energy between the two photosystems, the efficient light capturing and protection of the reaction centers and antennae from overexcitation. In this work direct structural information on the effect of LHCII protonation, which mimics the switch from light-harvesting to photoprotective state of the protein, was revealed by polarization-modulated infrared reflection-absorption spectroscopy (PM-IRRAS). PM-IRRAS on LHCII monolayers verified that the native helical structure of the protein is preserved in both partly deprotonated (pH 7.8, LHCII) and protonated (pH 5.2, p-LHCII) states. At low surface pressure, 10 mN/m, the orientation of the α-helices in these two LHCII states is different-tilted (θ ≈ 40°) in LHCII and nearly vertical (θ ≈ 90°) in p-LHCII monolayers; the partly deprotonated complex is more hydrophilic than the protonated one and exhibits stronger intertrimer interactions. At higher surface pressure, 30 mN/m, which is typical for biological membranes, the protonation affects neither the secondary structure nor the orientation of the transmembrane α-helices (tilted ∼45° relative to the membrane surface in both LHCII states) but weakens the intermolecular interactions within and/or between the trimers. PMID:26473578

  5. Membrane Protein Assembly into Nanodiscs

    PubMed Central

    Bayburt, Timothy H.; Sligar, Stephen G.

    2016-01-01

    Nanodiscs are soluble nanoscale phospholipid bilayers which can self-assemble integral membrane proteins for biophysical, enzymatic or structural investigations. This means for rendering membrane proteins soluble at the single molecule level offers advantages over liposomes or detergent micelles in terms of size, stability, ability to add genetically modifiable features to the Nanodisc structure and ready access to both sides of the phospholipid bilayer domain. Thus the Nanodisc system provides a novel platform for understanding membrane protein function. We provide an overview of the Nanodisc approach and document through several examples many of the applications to the study of the structure and function of integral membrane proteins. PMID:19836392

  6. Functionalized dye encapsulated polymer nanoparticles attached with a BSA scaffold as efficient antenna materials for artificial light harvesting.

    PubMed

    Jana, Bikash; Bhattacharyya, Santanu; Patra, Amitava

    2016-09-21

    A potential strategy for a new generation light harvesting system is multi-chromophoric donor-acceptor pairs where light energy is absorbed by an antenna complex and subsequently transfers its energy to the acceptor via energy transfer. Here, we design a system of a functionalized polymer nanoparticle-protein scaffold for efficient light harvesting and white light generation where a dye doped polymer nanoparticle acts as a donor and a dye encapsulated BSA protein acts as an acceptor. Analysis reveals that 91.3% energy transfer occurs from the dye doped polymer nanoparticle to the dye encapsulated BSA protein. The antenna effect of this light harvesting system is found to be 31 at a donor to acceptor ratio of 0.82 : 1 which is unprecedented. The enhanced effective molar extinction coefficient of the acceptor dye is potential for the light harvesting system. Bright white light emission with a quantum yield of 14% under single wavelength excitation is obtained by changing the ratio of donor to acceptor. Analysis reveals that the efficient energy transfer in this polymer-protein assembly may open up new possibilities in designing artificial light harvesting systems for future applications. PMID:27546792

  7. Phycobilisome Mobility and Its Role in the Regulation of Light Harvesting in Red Algae.

    PubMed

    Kaňa, Radek; Kotabová, Eva; Lukeš, Martin; Papáček, Stěpán; Matonoha, Ctirad; Liu, Lu-Ning; Prášil, Ondřej; Mullineaux, Conrad W

    2014-06-19

    Red algae represent an evolutionarily important group that gave rise to the whole red clade of photosynthetic organisms. They contain a unique combination of light-harvesting systems represented by a membrane-bound antenna and by phycobilisomes situated on thylakoid membrane surfaces. So far, very little has been revealed about the mobility of their phycobilisomes and the regulation of their light-harvesting system in general. Therefore, we carried out a detailed analysis of phycobilisome dynamics in several red alga strains and compared these results with the presence (or absence) of photoprotective mechanisms. Our data conclusively prove phycobilisome mobility in two model mesophilic red alga strains, Porphyridium cruentum and Rhodella violacea. In contrast, there was almost no phycobilisome mobility in the thermophilic red alga Cyanidium caldarium that was not caused by a decrease in lipid desaturation in this extremophile. Experimental data attributed this immobility to the strong phycobilisome-photosystem interaction that highly restricted phycobilisome movement. Variations in phycobilisome mobility reflect the different ways in which light-harvesting antennae can be regulated in mesophilic and thermophilic red algae. Fluorescence changes attributed in cyanobacteria to state transitions were observed only in mesophilic P. cruentum with mobile phycobilisomes, and they were absent in the extremophilic C. caldarium with immobile phycobilisomes. We suggest that state transitions have an important regulatory function in mesophilic red algae; however, in thermophilic red algae, this process is replaced by nonphotochemical quenching. PMID:24948833

  8. Phycobilisome Mobility and Its Role in the Regulation of Light Harvesting in Red Algae1[W

    PubMed Central

    Kaňa, Radek; Kotabová, Eva; Lukeš, Martin; Papáček, Štěpán; Matonoha, Ctirad; Liu, Lu-Ning; Prášil, Ondřej; Mullineaux, Conrad W.

    2014-01-01

    Red algae represent an evolutionarily important group that gave rise to the whole red clade of photosynthetic organisms. They contain a unique combination of light-harvesting systems represented by a membrane-bound antenna and by phycobilisomes situated on thylakoid membrane surfaces. So far, very little has been revealed about the mobility of their phycobilisomes and the regulation of their light-harvesting system in general. Therefore, we carried out a detailed analysis of phycobilisome dynamics in several red alga strains and compared these results with the presence (or absence) of photoprotective mechanisms. Our data conclusively prove phycobilisome mobility in two model mesophilic red alga strains, Porphyridium cruentum and Rhodella violacea. In contrast, there was almost no phycobilisome mobility in the thermophilic red alga Cyanidium caldarium that was not caused by a decrease in lipid desaturation in this extremophile. Experimental data attributed this immobility to the strong phycobilisome-photosystem interaction that highly restricted phycobilisome movement. Variations in phycobilisome mobility reflect the different ways in which light-harvesting antennae can be regulated in mesophilic and thermophilic red algae. Fluorescence changes attributed in cyanobacteria to state transitions were observed only in mesophilic P. cruentum with mobile phycobilisomes, and they were absent in the extremophilic C. caldarium with immobile phycobilisomes. We suggest that state transitions have an important regulatory function in mesophilic red algae; however, in thermophilic red algae, this process is replaced by nonphotochemical quenching. PMID:24948833

  9. Structure Prediction of Membrane Proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Xiche

    Membrane proteins play a central role in many cellular and physiological processes. It is estimated that integral membrane proteins make up about 20-30% of the proteome (Krogh et al., 2001b; Stevens and Arkin, 2000; von Heijne, 1999). They are essential mediators of material and information transfer across cell membranes. Their functions include active and passive transport of molecules into and out of cells and organelles; transduction of energy among various forms (light, electrical, and chemical energy); as well as reception and transduction of chemical and electrical signals across membranes (Avdonin, 2005; Bockaert et al., 2002; Pahl, 1999; Rehling et al., 2004; Stack et al., 1995). Identifying these transmembrane (TM) proteins and deciphering their molecular mechanisms, then, is of great importance, particularly as applied to biomedicine. Membrane proteins are the targets of a large number of pharmacologically and toxicologically active substances, and are directly involved in their uptake, metabolism, and clearance (Bettler et al., 1998; Cohen, 2002; Heusser and Jardieu, 1997; Tibes et al., 2005; Xu et al., 2005). Despite the importance of membrane proteins, the knowledge of their high-resolution structures and mechanisms of action has lagged far behind in comparison to that of water-soluble proteins: less than 1% of all three-dimensional structures deposited in the Protein Data Bank are of membrane proteins. This unfortunate disparity stems from difficulties in overexpression and the crystallization of membrane proteins (Grisshammer and Tate, 1995; Michel, 1991).

  10. Anti-Correlated Pigment Fluctuations of Allophycocyanin for Highly Efficient Photosynthetic Light Harvesting in Cyanobacteria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moran, Andrew; Nome, Rene; Scherer, Norbert

    2008-03-01

    The phycobiliprotein, allophycocyanin (APC), is an excellent model system for the study of light harvesting pigment interactions with a protein bath. This work investigates the relaxation of electronic excitations in APC with electric field-resolved transient grating and photon echo spectroscopies. Transient grating experiments observe a 35 fs internal conversion process between single exciton levels. Most importantly, our analysis shows that anti-correlated phycocyanobilin pigment energy level fluctuations cause the anti-diagonal orientation of the node in the measured dispersive photon echo spectrum. We believe this novel observation to reflect concerted protein bath fluctuations over the 2 nm length scale that separates the pigments. Consideration of the Forster energy transfer rate theory suggests that APC has evolved with this property to enhance its photosynthetic light harvesting efficiency.

  11. Solid-state NMR applied to photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes.

    PubMed

    Pandit, Anjali; de Groot, Huub J M

    2012-03-01

    This short review describes how solid-state NMR has provided a mechanistic and electronic picture of pigment-protein and pigment-pigment interactions in photosynthetic antenna complexes. NMR results on purple bacterial antenna complexes show how the packing of the protein and the pigments inside the light-harvesting oligomers induces mutual conformational stress. The protein scaffold produces deformation and electrostatic polarization of the BChl macrocycles and leads to a partial electronic charge transfer between the BChls and their coordinating histidines, which can tune the light-harvesting function. In chlorosome antennae assemblies, the NMR template structure reveals how the chromophores can direct their self-assembly into higher macrostructures which, in turn, tune the light-harvesting properties of the individual molecules by controlling their disorder, structural deformation, and electronic polarization without the need for a protein scaffold. These results pave the way for addressing the next challenge, which is to resolve the functional conformational dynamics of the lhc antennae of oxygenic species that allows them to switch between light-emitting and light-energy dissipating states. PMID:21842288

  12. Light-harvesting regulation from leaf to molecule with the emphasis on rapid changes in antenna size.

    PubMed

    Xu, Da-Quan; Chen, Yue; Chen, Gen-Yun

    2015-05-01

    In the sunlight-fluctuating environment, plants often encounter both light-deficiency and light-excess cases. Therefore, regulation of light harvesting is absolutely essential for photosynthesis in order to maximize light utilization at low light and avoid photodamage of the photosynthetic apparatus at high light. Plants have developed a series of strategies of light-harvesting regulation during evolution. These strategies include rapid responses such as leaf movement and chloroplast movement, state transitions, and reversible dissociation of some light-harvesting complex of the photosystem II (LHCIIs) from PSII core complexes, and slow acclimation strategies such as changes in the protein abundance of light-harvesting antenna and modifications of leaf morphology, structure, and compositions. This review discusses successively these strategies and focuses on the rapid change in antenna size, namely reversible dissociation of some peripheral light-harvesting antennas (LHCIIs) from PSII core complex. It is involved in protective role and species dependence of the dissociation, differences between the dissociation and state transitions, relationship between the dissociation and thylakoid protein phosphorylation, and possible mechanism for thermal dissipation by the dissociated LHCIIs. PMID:25773873

  13. Single-molecule exploration of photoprotective mechanisms in light-harvesting complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Hsiang-Yu; Schlau-Cohen, Gabriela S.; Gwizdala, Michal; Krüger, Tjaart; Xu, Pengqi; Croce, Roberta; van Grondelle, Rienk; Moerner, W. E.

    2015-03-01

    Plants harvest sunlight by converting light energy to electron flow through the primary events in photosynthesis. One important question is how the light harvesting machinery adapts to fluctuating sunlight intensity. As a result of various regulatory processes, efficient light harvesting and photoprotection are balanced. Some of the biological steps in the photoprotective processes have been extensively studied and physiological regulatory factors have been identified. For example, the effect of lumen pH in changing carotenoid composition has been explored. However, the importance of photophysical dynamics in the initial light-harvesting steps and its relation to photoprotection remain poorly understood. Conformational and excited-state dynamics of multi-chromophore pigment-protein complexes are often difficult to study and limited information can be extracted from ensemble-averaged measurements. To address the problem, we use the Anti-Brownian ELectrokinetic (ABEL) trap to investigate the fluorescence from individual copies of light-harvesting complex II (LHCII), the primary antenna protein in higher plants, in a solution-phase environment. Perturbative surface immobilization or encapsulation schemes are avoided, and therefore the intrinsic dynamics and heterogeneity in the fluorescence of individual proteins are revealed. We perform simultaneous measurements of fluorescence intensity (brightness), excited-state lifetime, and emission spectrum of single trapped proteins. By analyzing the correlated changes between these observables, we identify forms of LHCII with different fluorescence intensities and excited-state lifetimes. The distinct forms may be associated with different energy dissipation mechanisms in the energy transfer chain. Changes of relative populations in response to pH and carotenoid composition are observed, which may extend our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of photoprotection.

  14. Predicting the structure of the light-harvesting complex II of Rhodospirillum molischianum.

    PubMed Central

    Hu, X.; Xu, D.; Hamer, K.; Schulten, K.; Koepke, J.; Michel, H.

    1995-01-01

    We attempted to predict through computer modeling the structure of the light-harvesting complex II (LH-II) of Rhodospirillum molischianum, before the impending publication of the structure of a homologous protein solved by means of X-ray diffraction. The protein studied is an integral membrane protein of 16 independent polypeptides, 8 alpha-apoproteins and 8 beta-apoproteins, which aggregate and bind to 24 bacteriochlorophyll-a's and 12 lycopenes. Available diffraction data of a crystal of the protein, which could not be phased due to a lack of heavy metal derivatives, served to test the predicted structure, guiding the search. In order to determine the secondary structure, hydropathy analysis was performed to identify the putative transmembrane segments and multiple sequence alignment propensity analyses were used to pinpoint the exact sites of the 20-residue-long transmembrane segment and the 4-residue-long terminal sequence at both ends, which were independently verified and improved by homology modeling. A consensus assignment for the secondary structure was derived from a combination of all the prediction methods used. Three-dimensional structures for the alpha- and the beta-apoprotein were built by comparative modeling. The resulting tertiary structures are combined, using X-PLOR, into an alpha beta dimer pair with bacteriochlorophyll-a's attached under constraints provided by site-directed mutagenesis and spectral data. The alpha beta dimer pairs were then aggregated into a quaternary structure through further molecular dynamics simulations and energy minimization. The structure of LH-II so determined is an octamer of alpha beta heterodimers forming a ring with a diameter of 70 A. PMID:8528066

  15. Reciprocal expression of two candidate di-iron enzymes affecting photosystem I and light-harvesting complex accumulation.

    PubMed

    Moseley, Jeffrey L; Page, M Dudley; Alder, Nancy P; Eriksson, Mats; Quinn, Jeanette; Soto, Feiris; Theg, Steven M; Hippler, Michael; Merchant, Sabeeha

    2002-03-01

    Crd1 (Copper response defect 1), which is required for the maintenance of photosystem I and its associated light-harvesting complexes in copper-deficient (-Cu) and oxygen-deficient (-O(2)) Chlamydomonas reinhardtii cells, is localized to the thylakoid membrane. A related protein, Cth1 (Copper target homolog 1), is shown to have a similar but not identical function by genetic suppressor analysis of gain-of-function sct1 (suppressor of copper target 1) strains that are transposon-containing alleles at CTH1. The pattern of Crd1 versus Cth1 accumulation is reciprocal; Crd1 abundance is increased in -Cu or -O(2) cells, whereas Cth1 accumulates in copper-sufficient (+Cu), oxygenated cells. This expression pattern is determined by a single trans-acting regulatory locus, CRR1 (COPPER RESPONSE REGULATOR 1), which activates transcription in -Cu cells. In +Cu cells, a 2.1-kb Cth1 mRNA is produced and translated, whereas Crd1 is transcribed only at basal levels, leading to Cth1 accumulation in +Cu cells. In -Cu cells, CRR1 function determines the activation of Crd1 expression and the production of an alternative 3.1-kb Cth1 mRNA that is extended at the 5' end relative to the 2.1-kb mRNA. Synthesis of the 3.1-kb mRNA, which encodes six small upstream open reading frames that possibly result in poor translation, blocks the downstream promoter through transcriptional occlusion. Fluorescence analysis of wild-type, crd1, and sct1 strains indicates that copper-responsive adjustment of the Cth1:Crd1 ratio results in modification of the interactions between photosystem I and associated light-harvesting complexes. The tightly coordinated CRR1-dependent regulation of isoenzymes Cth1 and Crd1 reinforces the notion that copper plays a specific role in the maintenance of chlorophyll proteins. PMID:11910013

  16. Early folding events during light harvesting complex II assembly in vitro monitored by pulsed electron paramagnetic resonance.

    PubMed

    Fehr, Niklas; García-Rubio, Inés; Jeschke, Gunnar; Paulsen, Harald

    2016-06-01

    Efficient energy transfer in the major light harvesting complex II (LHCII) of green plants is facilitated by the precise alignment of pigments due to the protein matrix they are bound to. Much is known about the import of the LHCII apoprotein into the chloroplast via the TOC/TIC system and its targeting to the thylakoid membrane but information is sparse about when and where the pigments are bound and how this is coordinated with protein folding. In vitro, the LHCII apoprotein spontaneously folds and binds its pigments if the detergent-solubilized protein is combined with a mixture of chlorophylls a and b and carotenoids. In the present work, we employed this approach to study apoprotein folding and pigment binding in a time-resolved manner by using pulsed electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR). Intra-molecular distances were measured before folding, after 255 ms and 40 s folding time in the absence of cryoprotectant, and in the fully folded and assembled LHCII. In accordance with earlier results, the most of the folding of the three membrane-spanning alpha helices precedes their apposition into the final tertiary structure. However, their formation follows different kinetics, partially extending into the final phase of LHCII formation during which much of the condensation of the pigment-protein structure occurs, presumably governed by the binding of chlorophyll b. A rough timetable is proposed to sort partial events into the LHCII formation process. PMID:27063475

  17. Design principles of natural light-harvesting as revealed by single molecule spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krüger, T. P. J.; van Grondelle, R.

    2016-01-01

    Biology offers a boundless source of adaptation, innovation, and inspiration. A wide range of photosynthetic organisms exist that are capable of harvesting solar light in an exceptionally efficient way, using abundant and low-cost materials. These natural light-harvesting complexes consist of proteins that strongly bind a high density of chromophores to capture solar photons and rapidly transfer the excitation energy to the photochemical reaction centre. The amount of harvested light is also delicately tuned to the level of solar radiation to maintain a constant energy throughput at the reaction centre and avoid the accumulation of the products of charge separation. In this Review, recent developments in the understanding of light-harvesting by plants will be discussed, based on results obtained from single molecule spectroscopy studies. Three design principles of the main light-harvesting antenna of plants will be highlighted: (a) fine, photoactive control over the intrinsic protein disorder to efficiently use intrinsically available thermal energy dissipation mechanisms; (b) the design of the protein microenvironment of a low-energy chromophore dimer to control the amount of shade absorption; (c) the design of the exciton manifold to ensure efficient funneling of the harvested light to the terminal emitter cluster.

  18. Protein kinase and phosphatase activities of thylakoid membranes

    SciTech Connect

    Michel, H.; Shaw, E.K.; Bennett, J.

    1987-01-01

    Dephosphorylation of the 25 and 27 kDa light-harvesting Chl a/b proteins (LHCII) of the thylakoid membranes is catalyzed by a phosphatase which differs from previously reported thylakoid-bound phosphatases in having an alkaline pH optimum (9.0) and a requirement for Mg/sup 2 +/ ions. Dephosphorylation of the 8.3 kDa psb H gene product requires a Mg/sup 2 +/ ion concentration more than 200 fold higher than that for dephosphorylation of LHC II. The 8.3 kDa and 27 kDa proteins appear to be phosphorylated by two distinct kinases, which differ in substrate specificity and sensitivity to inhibitors. The plastoquinone antagonist 2,5-dibromo-3-methyl-6-isopropyl-benzoquinone (DBMIB) inhibits phosphorylation of the 27 kDa LHC II much more readily than phosphorylation of the 8.3 kDa protein. A similar pattern of inhibition is seen for two synthetic oligopeptides (MRKSATTKKAVC and ATQTLESSSRC) which are analogs of the phosphorylation sites of the two proteins. Possible modes of action of DBMIB are discussed. 45 refs., 7 figs., 3 tabs.

  19. Discrete Redox Signaling Pathways Regulate Photosynthetic Light-Harvesting and Chloroplast Gene Transcription

    PubMed Central

    Allen, John F.; Santabarbara, Stefano; Allen, Carol A.; Puthiyaveetil, Sujith

    2011-01-01

    In photosynthesis in chloroplasts, two related regulatory processes balance the actions of photosystems I and II. These processes are short-term, post-translational redistribution of light-harvesting capacity, and long-term adjustment of photosystem stoichiometry initiated by control of chloroplast DNA transcription. Both responses are initiated by changes in the redox state of the electron carrier, plastoquinone, which connects the two photosystems. Chloroplast Sensor Kinase (CSK) is a regulator of transcription of chloroplast genes for reaction centres of the two photosystems, and a sensor of plastoquinone redox state. We asked whether CSK is also involved in regulation of absorbed light energy distribution by phosphorylation of light-harvesting complex II (LHC II). Chloroplast thylakoid membranes isolated from a CSK T-DNA insertion mutant and from wild-type Arabidopsis thaliana exhibit similar light- and redox-induced 32P-labelling of LHC II and changes in 77 K chlorophyll fluorescence emission spectra, while room-temperature chlorophyll fluorescence emission transients from Arabidopsis leaves are perturbed by inactivation of CSK. The results indicate indirect, pleiotropic effects of reaction centre gene transcription on regulation of photosynthetic light-harvesting in vivo. A single, direct redox signal is transmitted separately to discrete transcriptional and post-translational branches of an integrated cytoplasmic regulatory system. PMID:22039472

  20. Optimal Thermal Environments for Plant Metabolic Processes (Cucumis sativus L.) (Light-Harvesting Chlorophyll a/b Pigment-Protein Complex of Photosystem II and Seedling Establishment in Cucumber).

    PubMed Central

    Burke, J. J.; Oliver, M. J.

    1993-01-01

    Analysis of the temperatures providing maximal photosystem II fluorescence reappearance following illumination and thermal kinetic windows (TKWs), obtained from the temperature characteristics of enzyme apparent Km values, have been proposed as indicators of the bounds of thermal stress in plants. In this study, we have evaluated the temperature optimum for the accumulation of the chlorophyll a/b light-harvesting complex of photosystem II (LHCP II), its mRNA, and the mRNA of the small subunit of ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase/oxygenase (Rubisco) in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L. cv Ashley) as a broader measure of metabolism than that provided by either the fluorescence reappearance or TKWs. The TKW for cucumber is between 23.5 and 39[deg]C, with the minimum apparent Km occurring at 32.5[deg]C. The photosystem II variable fluorescence reappearance following illumination was maximal between 30 and 35[deg]C. Maximum synthesis of the LHCP II occurred at 30[deg] C. The light-induced accumulation of the LHCP II and the small subunit of Rubisco mRNAs showed similar temperature characteristics. Suboptimal temperatures delayed germination, altered cotyledonary soluble sugar content, and broadened the temperature range for chlorophyll accumulation. These results demonstrate an effect of seed reserve mobilization on the range of temperatures for chlorophyll accumulation, and suggest that metabolic temperature characteristics may be broadened by increasing available substrates for enzyme utilization. This study provides new information about the relationship between TKWs and cellular responses to temperature. In addition, the results suggest that the temperature range outside of which plants experience temperature stress is narrower than traditionally supposed. PMID:12231821

  1. Convergent synthesis of multiporphyrin light-harvesting rods

    DOEpatents

    Lindsey, Jonathan S.; Loewe, Robert S.

    2003-08-05

    The present invention provides a convergent method for the synthesis of light harvesting rods. The rods are oligomers of the formula A.sup.1 (A.sup.b+1).sub.b, wherein b is at least 1, A.sup.1 through A.sup.b+1 are covalently coupled rod segments, and each rod segment A.sup.1 through A.sup.1+b comprises a compound of the formula X.sup.1 (X.sup.m+1).sub.m wherein m is at least 1 and X.sup.1 through X.sup.m+1 are covalently coupled porphyrinic macrocycles. Light harvesting arrays and solar cells containing such light harvesting rods are also described, along with intermediates useful in such methods and rods produced by such methods.

  2. Quantum coherent energy transfer over varying pathways in single light-harvesting complexes.

    PubMed

    Hildner, Richard; Brinks, Daan; Nieder, Jana B; Cogdell, Richard J; van Hulst, Niek F

    2013-06-21

    The initial steps of photosynthesis comprise the absorption of sunlight by pigment-protein antenna complexes followed by rapid and highly efficient funneling of excitation energy to a reaction center. In these transport processes, signatures of unexpectedly long-lived coherences have emerged in two-dimensional ensemble spectra of various light-harvesting complexes. Here, we demonstrate ultrafast quantum coherent energy transfer within individual antenna complexes of a purple bacterium under physiological conditions. We find that quantum coherences between electronically coupled energy eigenstates persist at least 400 femtoseconds and that distinct energy-transfer pathways that change with time can be identified in each complex. Our data suggest that long-lived quantum coherence renders energy transfer in photosynthetic systems robust in the presence of disorder, which is a prerequisite for efficient light harvesting. PMID:23788794

  3. Direct evidence of quantum transport in photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes.

    PubMed

    Panitchayangkoon, Gitt; Voronine, Dmitri V; Abramavicius, Darius; Caram, Justin R; Lewis, Nicholas H C; Mukamel, Shaul; Engel, Gregory S

    2011-12-27

    The photosynthetic light-harvesting apparatus moves energy from absorbed photons to the reaction center with remarkable quantum efficiency. Recently, long-lived quantum coherence has been proposed to influence efficiency and robustness of photosynthetic energy transfer in light-harvesting antennae. The quantum aspect of these dynamics has generated great interest both because of the possibility for efficient long-range energy transfer and because biology is typically considered to operate entirely in the classical regime. Yet, experiments to date show only that coherence persists long enough that it can influence dynamics, but they have not directly shown that coherence does influence energy transfer. Here, we provide experimental evidence that interaction between the bacteriochlorophyll chromophores and the protein environment surrounding them not only prolongs quantum coherence, but also spawns reversible, oscillatory energy transfer among excited states. Using two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy, we observe oscillatory excited-state populations demonstrating that quantum transport of energy occurs in biological systems. The observed population oscillation suggests that these light-harvesting antennae trade energy reversibly between the protein and the chromophores. Resolving design principles evident in this biological antenna could provide inspiration for new solar energy applications. PMID:22167798

  4. Molecular dynamics of membrane proteins.

    SciTech Connect

    Woolf, Thomas B.; Crozier, Paul Stewart; Stevens, Mark Jackson

    2004-10-01

    Understanding the dynamics of the membrane protein rhodopsin will have broad implications for other membrane proteins and cellular signaling processes. Rhodopsin (Rho) is a light activated G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR). When activated by ligands, GPCRs bind and activate G-proteins residing within the cell and begin a signaling cascade that results in the cell's response to external stimuli. More than 50% of all current drugs are targeted toward G-proteins. Rho is the prototypical member of the class A GPCR superfamily. Understanding the activation of Rho and its interaction with its Gprotein can therefore lead to a wider understanding of the mechanisms of GPCR activation and G-protein activation. Understanding the dark to light transition of Rho is fully analogous to the general ligand binding and activation problem for GPCRs. This transition is dependent on the lipid environment. The effect of lipids on membrane protein activity in general has had little attention, but evidence is beginning to show a significant role for lipids in membrane protein activity. Using the LAMMPS program and simulation methods benchmarked under the IBIG program, we perform a variety of allatom molecular dynamics simulations of membrane proteins.

  5. Temperature and Ionic Strength Effects on the Chlorosome Light-Harvesting Antenna Complex

    SciTech Connect

    Tang, Kuo-Hsiang; Zhu, Liying; Urban, Volker S; Collins, Aaron M.; Biswas, Pratim; Blankenship, R. E.

    2011-03-15

    Chlorosomes, the peripheral light-harvesting antenna complex from green photosynthetic bacteria, are the largest and one of the most efficient light-harvesting antenna complexes found in nature. In contrast to other light-harvesting antennas, chlorosomes are constructed from more than 150,000 self-assembled bacteriochlorophylls (BChls) and contain relatively few proteins that play secondary roles. These unique properties have led to chlorosomes as an attractive candidate for developing biohybrid solar cell devices. In this article, we investigate the temperature and ionic strength effects on the viability of chlorosomes from the photosynthetic green bacterium Chloroflexus aurantiacus using small-angle neutron scattering and dynamic light scattering. Our studies indicate that chlorosomes remain intact up to 75 °C and that salt induces the formation of large aggregates of chlorosomes. No internal structural changes are observed for the aggregates. The salt-induced aggregation, which is a reversible process, is more efficient with divalent metal ions than with monovalent metal ions. Moreover, with treatment at 98 °C for 2 min, the bulk of the chlorosome pigments are undamaged, while the baseplate is destroyed. Chlorosomes without the baseplate remain rodlike in shape and are 30-40% smaller than with the baseplate attached. Further, chlorosomes are stable from pH 5.5 to 11.0. Together, this is the first time such a range of characterization tools have been used for chlorosomes, and this has enabled elucidation of properties that are not only important to understanding their functionality but also may be useful in biohybrid devices for effective light harvesting.

  6. Two Cyanobacterial Photoreceptors Regulate Photosynthetic Light Harvesting by Sensing Teal, Green, Yellow, and Red Light

    PubMed Central

    Wiltbank, Lisa B.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The genomes of many photosynthetic and nonphotosynthetic bacteria encode numerous phytochrome superfamily photoreceptors whose functions and interactions are largely unknown. Cyanobacterial genomes encode particularly large numbers of phytochrome superfamily members called cyanobacteriochromes. These have diverse light color-sensing abilities, and their functions and interactions are just beginning to be understood. One of the best characterized of these functions is the regulation of photosynthetic light-harvesting antenna composition in the cyanobacterium Fremyella diplosiphon by the cyanobacteriochrome RcaE in response to red and green light, a process known as chromatic acclimation. We have identified a new cyanobacteriochrome named DpxA that maximally senses teal (absorption maximum, 494 nm) and yellow (absorption maximum, 568 nm) light and represses the accumulation of a key light-harvesting protein called phycoerythrin, which is also regulated by RcaE during chromatic acclimation. Like RcaE, DpxA is a two-component system kinase, although these two photoreceptors can influence phycoerythrin expression through different signaling pathways. The peak responsiveness of DpxA to teal and yellow light provides highly refined color discrimination in the green spectral region, which provides important wavelengths for photosynthetic light harvesting in cyanobacteria. These results redefine chromatic acclimation in cyanobacteria and demonstrate that cyanobacteriochromes can coordinately impart sophisticated light color sensing across the visible spectrum to regulate important photosynthetic acclimation processes. PMID:26861023

  7. Light harvesting: Strike while the iron is cold

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galoppini, Elena

    2015-11-01

    For many years, chemists have tried and failed to find efficient light-harvesting molecules based on Earth-abundant, environmentally friendly iron. Now, an iron complex has been developed with photoluminescent properties that are tuned to efficiently convert light to electrons.

  8. The interactions of peripheral membrane proteins with biological membranes

    SciTech Connect

    Johs, Alexander; Whited, A. M.

    2015-01-01

    The interactions of peripheral proteins with membrane surfaces are critical to many biological processes, including signaling, recognition, membrane trafficking, cell division and cell structure. On a molecular level, peripheral membrane proteins can modulate lipid composition, membrane dynamics and protein-protein interactions. Biochemical and biophysical studies have shown that these interactions are in fact highly complex, dominated by several different types of interactions, and have an interdependent effect on both the protein and membrane. Here we examine three major mechanisms underlying the interactions between peripheral membrane proteins and membranes: electrostatic interactions, hydrophobic interactions, and fatty acid modification of proteins. While experimental approaches continue to provide critical insights into specific interaction mechanisms, emerging bioinformatics resources and tools contribute to a systems-level picture of protein-lipid interactions. Through these recent advances, we begin to understand the pivotal role of protein-lipid interactions underlying complex biological functions at membrane interfaces.

  9. The interactions of peripheral membrane proteins with biological membranes

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Johs, Alexander; Whited, A. M.

    2015-01-01

    The interactions of peripheral proteins with membrane surfaces are critical to many biological processes, including signaling, recognition, membrane trafficking, cell division and cell structure. On a molecular level, peripheral membrane proteins can modulate lipid composition, membrane dynamics and protein-protein interactions. Biochemical and biophysical studies have shown that these interactions are in fact highly complex, dominated by several different types of interactions, and have an interdependent effect on both the protein and membrane. Here we examine three major mechanisms underlying the interactions between peripheral membrane proteins and membranes: electrostatic interactions, hydrophobic interactions, and fatty acid modification of proteins. While experimental approachesmore » continue to provide critical insights into specific interaction mechanisms, emerging bioinformatics resources and tools contribute to a systems-level picture of protein-lipid interactions. Through these recent advances, we begin to understand the pivotal role of protein-lipid interactions underlying complex biological functions at membrane interfaces.« less

  10. Reconstitution of Gloeobacter violaceus Rhodopsin with a Light-Harvesting Carotenoid Antenna†

    PubMed Central

    Imasheva, Eleonora S.; Balashov, Sergei P.; Choi, Ah Reum; Jung, Kwang-Hwan; Lanyi, Janos K.

    2009-01-01

    We show that salinixanthin, the light-harvesting carotenoid antenna of xanthorhodopsin, can be reconstituted into the retinal protein from Gloeobacter violaceus expressed in E. coli. Reconstitution of gloeobacter rhodopsin with the carotenoid is accompanied by characteristic absorption changes and the appearance of CD bands similar to those observed for xanthorhodopsin that indicate immobilization and twist of the carotenoid in the binding site. As in xanthorhodopsin, the carotenoid functions as a light-harvesting antenna. The excitation spectrum for retinal fluorescence emission shows that ca. 36% of the energy absorbed by the carotenoid is transferred to the retinal. From excitation anisotropy, we calculate the angle between the two chromophores as ca. 50°, similar to that in xanthorhodopsin. The results indicate that gloeobacter rhodopsin binds salinixanthin in a similar way as xanthorhodopsin, and suggest that it might bind a carotenoid also in vivo. In the crystallographic structure of xanthorhodopsin, the conjugated chain of the carotenoid lies on the surface of helices E and F, and the 4-keto-ring is immersed in the protein at van der Waals distance from the ionone ring of the retinal. The 4-keto-ring is in the space occupied by a tryptophan in bacteriorhodopsin, which is replaced by the smaller glycine in xanthorhodopsin and gloeobacter rhodopsin. Specific binding of the carotenoid and its light-harvesting function are eliminated by a single mutation of the gloeobacter protein that replaces this glycine with a tryptophan. This indicates that the 4-keto-ring is critically involved in carotenoid binding, and suggests that a number of other recently identified retinal proteins, from a diverse group of organisms, could also contain carotenoid antenna since they carry the homologous glycine near the retinal. PMID:19842712

  11. Replication of Leaf Surface Structures for Light Harvesting

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Zhongjia; Yang, Sai; Zhang, Hui; Zhang, Meng; Cao, Wei

    2015-01-01

    As one of the most important hosts of natural light harvesting, foliage normally has complicated surface structures to capture solar radiances. Bio-mimicking leaf surface structures can provide novel designs of covers in photovoltaic systems. In this article, we reported on replicating leaf surface structures on poly-(methyl methacrylate) polymers to prompt harvesting efficiencies. Prepared via a double transfer process, the polymers were found to have high optical transparencies and transmission hazes, with both values exceeding 80% in some species. Benefiting from optical properties and wrinkled surfaces, the biomimetic polymers brought up to 17% gains to photovoltaic efficiencies. Through Monte-Carlo simulations of light transport, ultrahigh haze values and low reflections were attributed to lightwave guidance schemes lead by the nano- and micro-morphologies which are inherited from master leaves. Thus, leaf surface bio-mimicking can be considered as a strategic direction to design covers of light harvesting systems. PMID:26381702

  12. Replication of Leaf Surface Structures for Light Harvesting.

    PubMed

    Huang, Zhongjia; Yang, Sai; Zhang, Hui; Zhang, Meng; Cao, Wei

    2015-01-01

    As one of the most important hosts of natural light harvesting, foliage normally has complicated surface structures to capture solar radiances. Bio-mimicking leaf surface structures can provide novel designs of covers in photovoltaic systems. In this article, we reported on replicating leaf surface structures on poly-(methyl methacrylate) polymers to prompt harvesting efficiencies. Prepared via a double transfer process, the polymers were found to have high optical transparencies and transmission hazes, with both values exceeding 80% in some species. Benefiting from optical properties and wrinkled surfaces, the biomimetic polymers brought up to 17% gains to photovoltaic efficiencies. Through Monte-Carlo simulations of light transport, ultrahigh haze values and low reflections were attributed to lightwave guidance schemes lead by the nano- and micro-morphologies which are inherited from master leaves. Thus, leaf surface bio-mimicking can be considered as a strategic direction to design covers of light harvesting systems. PMID:26381702

  13. Light-harvesting materials: Soft support for energy conversion

    SciTech Connect

    Stolley, Ryan M.; Helm, Monte L.

    2014-11-10

    To convert solar energy into viable fuel sources, coupling light-harvesting materials to catalysts is a critical challenge. Now, coupling between an organic supramolecular hydrogel and a non precious metal catalyst has been demonstrated to be effective for photocatalytic H2 production. Ryan M. Stolley and Monte L. Helm are at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA, USA 99352. PNNL is operated by Battelle for the US Department of Energy. e-mail: Monte.Helm@pnnl.gov

  14. PHOTOSYSTEM II PROTEIN33, a protein conserved in the plastid lineage, is associated with the chloroplast thylakoid membrane and provides stability to photosystem II supercomplexes in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Fristedt, Rikard; Herdean, Andrei; Blaby-Haas, Crysten E; Mamedov, Fikret; Merchant, Sabeeha S; Last, Robert L; Lundin, Björn

    2015-02-01

    Photosystem II (PSII) is a multiprotein complex that catalyzes the light-driven water-splitting reactions of oxygenic photosynthesis. Light absorption by PSII leads to the production of excited states and reactive oxygen species that can cause damage to this complex. Here, we describe Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) At1g71500, which encodes a previously uncharacterized protein that is a PSII auxiliary core protein and hence is named PHOTOSYSTEM II PROTEIN33 (PSB33). We present evidence that PSB33 functions in the maintenance of PSII-light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) supercomplex organization. PSB33 encodes a protein with a chloroplast transit peptide and one transmembrane segment. In silico analysis of PSB33 revealed a light-harvesting complex-binding motif within the transmembrane segment and a large surface-exposed head domain. Biochemical analysis of PSII complexes further indicates that PSB33 is an integral membrane protein located in the vicinity of LHCII and the PSII CP43 reaction center protein. Phenotypic characterization of mutants lacking PSB33 revealed reduced amounts of PSII-LHCII supercomplexes, very low state transition, and a lower capacity for nonphotochemical quenching, leading to increased photosensitivity in the mutant plants under light stress. Taken together, these results suggest a role for PSB33 in regulating and optimizing photosynthesis in response to changing light levels. PMID:25511433

  15. Light harvesting of silicon nanostructure for solar cells application.

    PubMed

    Li, Yingfeng; Yue, Luo; Luo, Younan; Liu, Wenjian; Li, Meicheng

    2016-07-11

    Silicon nanostructures have light-harvesting effects for enhancing the performance of solar cells. Based on theoretical investigations on the optical properties of silicon nanowire (Si NW), the influencing laws of the size of Si NW on its light-harvesting effect are proposed. For the first time, we reveal that the resonant wavelength of Si NW predicted by the leaky mode theory does not correspond to the actual resonant wavelength calculated by the discrete dipole approximation method, but exactly coincides with the leftmost wavelength of the resonance peak. Then, the size dependency of the resonant intensity and width of Si NW is different from that of spherical nanoparticles, which can be deduced from the Mie theory. The size dependencies of resonant intensity and width are also applicative for silver/silicon composite nanowires. In addition, it is found that the harvested light by the Si and Ag/Si NW both show significant radial locality feature. The insight in this work is fundamental for the design and fabrication of efficient light -harvesting nanostructures for photovoltaic devices. PMID:27410895

  16. Artificial photosynthetic reaction centers coupled to light-harvesting antennas.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Pulak Kumar; Smirnov, Anatoly Yu; Nori, Franco

    2011-12-01

    We analyze a theoretical model for energy and electron transfer in an artificial photosynthetic system. The photosystem consists of a molecular triad (i.e., with a donor, a photosensitive unit, and an acceptor) coupled to four accessory light-harvesting-antenna pigments. The resonant energy transfer from the antennas to the artificial reaction center (the molecular triad) is described here by the Förster mechanism. We consider two different kinds of arrangements of the accessory light-harvesting pigments around the reaction center. The first arrangement allows direct excitation transfer to the reaction center from all the surrounding pigments. The second configuration transmits energy via a cascade mechanism along a chain of light-harvesting chromophores, where only one chromophore is connected to the reaction center. We show that the artificial photosynthetic system using the cascade energy transfer absorbs photons in a broader wavelength range and converts their energy into electricity with a higher efficiency than the system based on direct couplings between all the antenna chromophores and the reaction center. PMID:22304071

  17. Artificial photosynthetic reaction centers coupled to light-harvesting antennas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghosh, Pulak Kumar; Smirnov, Anatoly Yu.; Nori, Franco

    2011-12-01

    We analyze a theoretical model for energy and electron transfer in an artificial photosynthetic system. The photosystem consists of a molecular triad (i.e., with a donor, a photosensitive unit, and an acceptor) coupled to four accessory light-harvesting-antenna pigments. The resonant energy transfer from the antennas to the artificial reaction center (the molecular triad) is described here by the Förster mechanism. We consider two different kinds of arrangements of the accessory light-harvesting pigments around the reaction center. The first arrangement allows direct excitation transfer to the reaction center from all the surrounding pigments. The second configuration transmits energy via a cascade mechanism along a chain of light-harvesting chromophores, where only one chromophore is connected to the reaction center. We show that the artificial photosynthetic system using the cascade energy transfer absorbs photons in a broader wavelength range and converts their energy into electricity with a higher efficiency than the system based on direct couplings between all the antenna chromophores and the reaction center.

  18. Programming Light-Harvesting Efficiency Using DNA Origami

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The remarkable performance and quantum efficiency of biological light-harvesting complexes has prompted a multidisciplinary interest in engineering biologically inspired antenna systems as a possible route to novel solar cell technologies. Key to the effectiveness of biological “nanomachines” in light capture and energy transport is their highly ordered nanoscale architecture of photoactive molecules. Recently, DNA origami has emerged as a powerful tool for organizing multiple chromophores with base-pair accuracy and full geometric freedom. Here, we present a programmable antenna array on a DNA origami platform that enables the implementation of rationally designed antenna structures. We systematically analyze the light-harvesting efficiency with respect to number of donors and interdye distances of a ring-like antenna using ensemble and single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy and detailed Förster modeling. This comprehensive study demonstrates exquisite and reliable structural control over multichromophoric geometries and points to DNA origami as highly versatile platform for testing design concepts in artificial light-harvesting networks. PMID:26906456

  19. Programming Light-Harvesting Efficiency Using DNA Origami.

    PubMed

    Hemmig, Elisa A; Creatore, Celestino; Wünsch, Bettina; Hecker, Lisa; Mair, Philip; Parker, M Andy; Emmott, Stephen; Tinnefeld, Philip; Keyser, Ulrich F; Chin, Alex W

    2016-04-13

    The remarkable performance and quantum efficiency of biological light-harvesting complexes has prompted a multidisciplinary interest in engineering biologically inspired antenna systems as a possible route to novel solar cell technologies. Key to the effectiveness of biological "nanomachines" in light capture and energy transport is their highly ordered nanoscale architecture of photoactive molecules. Recently, DNA origami has emerged as a powerful tool for organizing multiple chromophores with base-pair accuracy and full geometric freedom. Here, we present a programmable antenna array on a DNA origami platform that enables the implementation of rationally designed antenna structures. We systematically analyze the light-harvesting efficiency with respect to number of donors and interdye distances of a ring-like antenna using ensemble and single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy and detailed Förster modeling. This comprehensive study demonstrates exquisite and reliable structural control over multichromophoric geometries and points to DNA origami as highly versatile platform for testing design concepts in artificial light-harvesting networks. PMID:26906456

  20. Desiccation enhances phosphorylation of PSII and affects the distribution of protein complexes in the thylakoid membrane.

    PubMed

    Gao, Shan; Gu, Wenhui; Xiong, Qian; Ge, Feng; Xie, Xiujun; Li, Jian; Chen, Weizhou; Pan, Guanghua; Wang, Guangce

    2015-03-01

    Desiccation has significant effects on photosynthetic processes in intertidal macro-algae. We studied an intertidal macro-alga, Ulva sp., which can tolerate desiccation, to investigate changes in photosynthetic performance and the components and structure of thylakoid membrane proteins in response to desiccation. Our results demonstrate that photosystem II (PSII) is more sensitive to desiccation than photosystem I (PSI) in Ulva sp. Comparative proteomics of the thylakoid membrane proteins at different levels of desiccation suggested that there were few changes in the content of proteins involved in photosynthesis during desiccation. Interestingly, we found that both the PSII subunit, PsbS (Photosystem II S subunit) (a four-helix protein in the LHC superfamily), and light-harvesting complex stress-related (LHCSR) proteins, which are required for non-photochemical quenching in land plants and algae, respectively, were present under both normal and desiccation conditions and both increased slightly during desiccation. In addition, the results of immunoblot analysis suggested that the phosphorylation of PSII and LHCII increases during desiccation. To investigate further, we separated out a supercomplex formed during desiccation by blue native-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis and identified the components by mass spectrometry analysis. Our results show that phosphorylation of the complex increases slightly with decreased water content. All the results suggest that during the course of desiccation, few changes occur in the content of thylakoid membrane proteins, but a rearrangement of the protein complex occurs in the intertidal macro-alga Ulva sp. PMID:25132456

  1. Biohybrid photosynthetic antenna complexes for enhanced light-harvesting.

    PubMed

    Springer, Joseph W; Parkes-Loach, Pamela S; Reddy, Kanumuri Ramesh; Krayer, Michael; Jiao, Jieying; Lee, Gregory M; Niedzwiedzki, Dariusz M; Harris, Michelle A; Kirmaier, Christine; Bocian, David F; Lindsey, Jonathan S; Holten, Dewey; Loach, Paul A

    2012-03-14

    Biohybrid antenna systems have been constructed that contain synthetic chromophores attached to 31mer analogues of the bacterial photosynthetic core light-harvesting (LH1) β-polypeptide. The peptides are engineered with a Cys site for bioconjugation with maleimide-terminated chromophores, which include synthetic bacteriochlorins (BC1, BC2) with strong near-infrared absorption and commercial dyes Oregon green (OGR) and rhodamine red (RR) with strong absorption in the blue-green to yellow-orange regions. The peptides place the Cys 14 (or 6) residues before a native His site that binds bacteriochlorophyll a (BChl-a) and, like the native LH proteins, have high helical content as probed by single-reflection IR spectroscopy. The His residue associates with BChl-a as in the native LH1 β-polypeptide to form dimeric ββ-subunit complexes [31mer(-14Cys)X/BChl](2), where X is one of the synthetic chromophores. The native-like BChl-a dimer has Q(y) absorption at 820 nm and serves as the acceptor for energy from light absorbed by the appended synthetic chromophore. The energy-transfer characteristics of biohybrid complexes have been characterized by steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence and absorption measurements. The quantum yields of energy transfer from a synthetic chromophore located 14 residues from the BChl-coordinating His site are as follows: OGR (0.30) < RR (0.60) < BC2 (0.90). Oligomeric assemblies of the subunit complexes [31mer(-14Cys)X/BChl](n) are accompanied by a bathochromic shift of the Q(y) absorption of the BChl-a oligomer as far as the 850-nm position found in cyclic native photosynthetic LH2 complexes. Room-temperature stabilized oligomeric biohybrids have energy-transfer quantum yields comparable to those of the dimeric subunit complexes as follows: OGR (0.20) < RR (0.80) < BC1 (0.90). Thus, the new biohybrid antennas retain the energy-transfer and self-assembly characteristics of the native antenna complexes, offer enhanced coverage of the solar

  2. Electric properties of thylakoid membranes from pea mutants with modified carotenoid and chlorophyll-protein complex composition.

    PubMed

    Dobrikova, A; Morgan, R M; Ivanov, A G; Apostolova, E; Petkanchin, I; Huner, N P; Taneva, S G

    2000-01-01

    Surface electric properties of thylakoid membranes from wild type and two mutant forms, Coeruleovireus 2/16 and Costata 2/133, of pea are investigated by electric light scattering and microelectrophoretic measurements. Characterization of the chlorophyll-protein complexes in thylakoid membranes reveals that the relative ratio of oligomeric (LHC II(1)) to monomeric (LHC II(3)) forms of the light-harvesting Chl a/b complex of Photosystem II is lower (3.34) in 2/133 mutant and higher (6.62) in 2/16 mutant than in wild type (4.57). This is accompanied by elevated amounts and a considerable reduction of all carotenoids in 2/16 and 2/133 mutant, respectively, as compared to the wild type. The concomitant variations of the permanent dipole moment (transversal charge asymmetry), electric polarizability and electrokinetic charge of the thylakoid membranes from both the mutants are discussed in terms of the differences in the supramolecular (oligomeric) organization of the light-harvesting complexes II within the photosynthetic apparatus. PMID:16228483

  3. Multiscale Simulation of Protein Mediated Membrane Remodeling

    PubMed Central

    Ayton, Gary S.; Voth, Gregory A.

    2009-01-01

    Proteins interacting with membranes can result in substantial membrane deformations and curvatures. This effect is known in its broadest terms as membrane remodeling. This review article will survey current multiscale simulation methodologies that have been employed to examine protein-mediated membrane remodeling. PMID:19922811

  4. Influences of Membrane Mimetic Environments on Membrane Protein Structures

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Huan-Xiang; Cross, Timothy A.

    2013-01-01

    The number of membrane protein structures in the Protein Data Bank is becoming significant and growing. Here, the transmembrane domain structures of the helical membrane proteins are evaluated to assess the influences of the membrane mimetic environments. Toward this goal, many of the biophysical properties of membranes are discussed and contrasted with those of the membrane mimetics commonly used for structure determination. Although the mimetic environments can perturb the protein structures to an extent that potentially gives rise to misinterpretation of functional mechanisms, there are also many structures that have a native-like appearance. From this assessment, an initial set of guidelines is proposed for distinguishing native-like from nonnative-like membrane protein structures. With experimental techniques for validation and computational methods for refinement and quality assessment and enhancement, there are good prospects for achieving native-like structures for these very important proteins. PMID:23451886

  5. Computational modeling of membrane proteins

    PubMed Central

    Leman, Julia Koehler; Ulmschneider, Martin B.; Gray, Jeffrey J.

    2014-01-01

    The determination of membrane protein (MP) structures has always trailed that of soluble proteins due to difficulties in their overexpression, reconstitution into membrane mimetics, and subsequent structure determination. The percentage of MP structures in the protein databank (PDB) has been at a constant 1-2% for the last decade. In contrast, over half of all drugs target MPs, only highlighting how little we understand about drug-specific effects in the human body. To reduce this gap, researchers have attempted to predict structural features of MPs even before the first structure was experimentally elucidated. In this review, we present current computational methods to predict MP structure, starting with secondary structure prediction, prediction of trans-membrane spans, and topology. Even though these methods generate reliable predictions, challenges such as predicting kinks or precise beginnings and ends of secondary structure elements are still waiting to be addressed. We describe recent developments in the prediction of 3D structures of both α-helical MPs as well as β-barrels using comparative modeling techniques, de novo methods, and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. The increase of MP structures has (1) facilitated comparative modeling due to availability of more and better templates, and (2) improved the statistics for knowledge-based scoring functions. Moreover, de novo methods have benefitted from the use of correlated mutations as restraints. Finally, we outline current advances that will likely shape the field in the forthcoming decade. PMID:25355688

  6. Reconstitution of Membrane Proteins into Model Membranes: Seeking Better Ways to Retain Protein Activities

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Hsin-Hui; Lithgow, Trevor; Martin, Lisandra L.

    2013-01-01

    The function of any given biological membrane is determined largely by the specific set of integral membrane proteins embedded in it, and the peripheral membrane proteins attached to the membrane surface. The activity of these proteins, in turn, can be modulated by the phospholipid composition of the membrane. The reconstitution of membrane proteins into a model membrane allows investigation of individual features and activities of a given cell membrane component. However, the activity of membrane proteins is often difficult to sustain following reconstitution, since the composition of the model phospholipid bilayer differs from that of the native cell membrane. This review will discuss the reconstitution of membrane protein activities in four different types of model membrane—monolayers, supported lipid bilayers, liposomes and nanodiscs, comparing their advantages in membrane protein reconstitution. Variation in the surrounding model environments for these four different types of membrane layer can affect the three-dimensional structure of reconstituted proteins and may possibly lead to loss of the proteins activity. We also discuss examples where the same membrane proteins have been successfully reconstituted into two or more model membrane systems with comparison of the observed activity in each system. Understanding of the behavioral changes for proteins in model membrane systems after membrane reconstitution is often a prerequisite to protein research. It is essential to find better solutions for retaining membrane protein activities for measurement and characterization in vitro. PMID:23344058

  7. Cell-free system for synthesizing membrane proteins cell free method for synthesizing membrane proteins

    DOEpatents

    Laible, Philip D; Hanson, Deborah K

    2013-06-04

    The invention provides an in vitro method for producing proteins, membrane proteins, membrane-associated proteins, and soluble proteins that interact with membrane-associated proteins for assembly into an oligomeric complex or that require association with a membrane for proper folding. The method comprises, supplying intracytoplasmic membranes from organisms; modifying protein composition of intracytoplasmic membranes from organism by modifying DNA to delete genes encoding functions of the organism not associated with the formation of the intracytoplasmic membranes; generating appropriate DNA or RNA templates that encode the target protein; and mixing the intracytoplasmic membranes with the template and a transcription/translation-competent cellular extract to cause simultaneous production of the membrane proteins and encapsulation of the membrane proteins within the intracytoplasmic membranes.

  8. Integral Light-Harvesting Complex Expression In Symbiodinium Within The Coral Acropora aspera Under Thermal Stress

    PubMed Central

    Gierz, Sarah L.; Gordon, Benjamin R.; Leggat, William

    2016-01-01

    Coral reef success is largely dependent on the symbiosis between coral hosts and dinoflagellate symbionts belonging to the genus Symbiodinium. Elevated temperatures can result in the expulsion of Symbiodinium or loss of their photosynthetic pigments and is known as coral bleaching. It has been postulated that the expression of light-harvesting protein complexes (LHCs), which bind chlorophylls (chl) and carotenoids, are important in photobleaching. This study explored the effect a sixteen-day thermal stress (increasing daily from 25–34 °C) on integral LHC (chlorophyll a-chlorophyll c2-peridinin protein complex (acpPC)) gene expression in Symbiodinium within the coral Acropora aspera. Thermal stress leads to a decrease in Symbiodinium photosynthetic efficiency by day eight, while symbiont density was significantly lower on day sixteen. Over this time period, the gene expression of five Symbiodinium acpPC genes was quantified. Three acpPC genes exhibited up-regulated expression when corals were exposed to temperatures above 31.5 °C (acpPCSym_1:1, day sixteen; acpPCSym_15, day twelve; and acpPCSym_18, day ten and day sixteen). In contrast, the expression of acpPCSym_5:1 and acpPCSym_10:1 was unchanged throughout the experiment. Interestingly, the three acpPC genes with increased expression cluster together in a phylogenetic analysis of light-harvesting complexes. PMID:27117333

  9. Integral Light-Harvesting Complex Expression In Symbiodinium Within The Coral Acropora aspera Under Thermal Stress.

    PubMed

    Gierz, Sarah L; Gordon, Benjamin R; Leggat, William

    2016-01-01

    Coral reef success is largely dependent on the symbiosis between coral hosts and dinoflagellate symbionts belonging to the genus Symbiodinium. Elevated temperatures can result in the expulsion of Symbiodinium or loss of their photosynthetic pigments and is known as coral bleaching. It has been postulated that the expression of light-harvesting protein complexes (LHCs), which bind chlorophylls (chl) and carotenoids, are important in photobleaching. This study explored the effect a sixteen-day thermal stress (increasing daily from 25-34 °C) on integral LHC (chlorophyll a-chlorophyll c2-peridinin protein complex (acpPC)) gene expression in Symbiodinium within the coral Acropora aspera. Thermal stress leads to a decrease in Symbiodinium photosynthetic efficiency by day eight, while symbiont density was significantly lower on day sixteen. Over this time period, the gene expression of five Symbiodinium acpPC genes was quantified. Three acpPC genes exhibited up-regulated expression when corals were exposed to temperatures above 31.5 °C (acpPCSym_1:1, day sixteen; acpPCSym_15, day twelve; and (acpPCSym_18), day ten and day sixteen). In contrast, the expression of acpPCSym_5:1 and acpPCSym_10:1 was unchanged throughout the experiment. Interestingly, the three acpPC genes with increased expression cluster together in a phylogenetic analysis of light-harvesting complexes. PMID:27117333

  10. Integral Light-Harvesting Complex Expression In Symbiodinium Within The Coral Acropora aspera Under Thermal Stress

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gierz, Sarah L.; Gordon, Benjamin R.; Leggat, William

    2016-04-01

    Coral reef success is largely dependent on the symbiosis between coral hosts and dinoflagellate symbionts belonging to the genus Symbiodinium. Elevated temperatures can result in the expulsion of Symbiodinium or loss of their photosynthetic pigments and is known as coral bleaching. It has been postulated that the expression of light-harvesting protein complexes (LHCs), which bind chlorophylls (chl) and carotenoids, are important in photobleaching. This study explored the effect a sixteen-day thermal stress (increasing daily from 25–34 °C) on integral LHC (chlorophyll a-chlorophyll c2-peridinin protein complex (acpPC)) gene expression in Symbiodinium within the coral Acropora aspera. Thermal stress leads to a decrease in Symbiodinium photosynthetic efficiency by day eight, while symbiont density was significantly lower on day sixteen. Over this time period, the gene expression of five Symbiodinium acpPC genes was quantified. Three acpPC genes exhibited up-regulated expression when corals were exposed to temperatures above 31.5 °C (acpPCSym_1:1, day sixteen; acpPCSym_15, day twelve; and acpPCSym_18, day ten and day sixteen). In contrast, the expression of acpPCSym_5:1 and acpPCSym_10:1 was unchanged throughout the experiment. Interestingly, the three acpPC genes with increased expression cluster together in a phylogenetic analysis of light-harvesting complexes.

  11. Structure-based identification of energy sinks in plant light-harvesting complex II.

    PubMed

    Müh, Frank; Madjet, Mohamed El-Amine; Renger, Thomas

    2010-10-28

    The local S(0) → S(1) transition energies (site energies) and corresponding excitonic couplings of chlorophyll a (Chla) and b (Chlb) pigments bound to trimeric, major light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) of higher plants are calculated on the basis of the two crystal structures (Liu et al. Nature 2004, 428, 287-292; Standfuss et al. EMBO J. 2005, 24, 919-928) by using a combined quantum chemical/electrostatic method (Müh et al. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 2007, 104, 16862-16867) that has been modified to cover membrane proteins and to account more realistically for the behavior of protonatable groups under the conditions of low-temperature optical spectroscopy. The obtained exciton levels are in reasonable agreement with experimental information (including linear absorption, linear dichroism, circular dichroism, fluorescence spectra of native as well as wild-type-minus-mutant difference absorption spectra of recombinant LHCII) and differ from earlier treatments based on fitted site energies (Novoderezhkin et al. J. Phys. Chem. B 2005, 109, 10493-10504) mainly by assigning a lower energy level to Chla 604 (in the nomenclature of Liu et al.) and Chlb 608 and a higher energy level to Chlb 605 and 609. The energy sink at cyrogenic temperatures is located at Chla 610 in the stromal layer of pigments, but structural changes at elevated temperatures may change the nature of the terminal emitter domain (including Chla 610/611/612). The site energy red-shift of Chla 610 is calculated to be significantly larger on the basis of the crystal structure of Standfuss et al. compared to that of Liu et al. due to conformational differences in the neighborhood of this pigment. A possible conformational change in the vicinity of Chla 604 involving tyrosine 112 and neoxanthin is found to strongly affect the site energy of this Chla and render it an alternative energy sink in the lumenal layer. A detailed, structure-based analysis of electrostatic pigment-protein interactions is

  12. The proteolysis adaptor, NblA, is essential for degradation of the core pigment of the cyanobacterial light-harvesting complex.

    PubMed

    Sendersky, Eleonora; Kozer, Noga; Levi, Mali; Moizik, Michael; Garini, Yuval; Shav-Tal, Yaron; Schwarz, Rakefet

    2015-09-01

    The cyanobacterial light-harvesting complex, the phycobilisome, is degraded under nutrient limitation, allowing the cell to adjust light absorbance to its metabolic capacity. This large light-harvesting antenna comprises a core complex of the pigment allophycocyanin, and rod-shaped pigment assemblies emanating from the core. NblA, a low-molecular-weight protein, is essential for degradation of the phycobilisome. NblA mutants exhibit high absorbance of rod pigments under conditions that generally elicit phycobilisome degradation, implicating NblA in degradation of these pigments. However, the vast abundance of rod pigments and the substantial overlap between the absorbance spectra of rod and core pigments has made it difficult to directly associate NblA with proteolysis of the phycobilisome core. Furthermore, lack of allophycocyanin degradation in an NblA mutant may reflect a requirement for rod degradation preceding core degradation, and does not prove direct involvement of NblA in proteolysis of the core pigment. Therefore, in this study, we used a mutant lacking phycocyanin, the rod pigment of Synechococcus elongatusPCC7942, to examine whether NblA is required for allophycocyanin degradation. We demonstrate that NblA is essential for degradation of the core complex of the phycobilisome. Furthermore, fluorescence lifetime imaging microscopy provided in situ evidence for the interaction of NblA with allophycocyanin, and indicated that NblA interacts with allophycocyanin complexes that are associated with the photosynthetic membranes. Based on these data, as well as previous observations indicating interaction of NblA with phycobilisomes attached to the photosynthetic membranes, we suggest a model for sequential phycobilisome disassembly by NblA. PMID:26173720

  13. Polypeptide profiles of chlorophyll . protein complexes and thylakoid membranes of spinach chloroplasts.

    PubMed

    Wessels, J S; Borchert, M T

    1978-07-01

    In addition to the major chlorophyll . protein complexes I and II, two minor chlorophyll proteins have been observed in sodium dodecyl sulfate (SDS))-polyacrylamide gels of spinach chloroplast membranes. These minor pigmented zones appeared to be derived from the light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b . protein and from the reaction centre complex of Photosystem II. Data are presented on the polypeptide profiles of purified digitonin-subschloroplast particles, with special regard to the effect of solubilization temperature and extraction of lipids. The results are compared with the SDS-polypeptide pattern of spinach thylakoids obtained under exactly the same conditions with respect to electrophoresis technique, solubilization method and presence of lipid. In addition, the effects of temperature and lipid extraction on the distinct chlorophyll . protein complexes appearing in SDS gel electrophoretograms of chloroplast membranes were studied by slicing the chlorophyll-containing regions and subjecting them to a second run with or without heating or extraction with acetone. By supplementing these data with an examination of the polypeptide composition of cytochrome f and coupling factor, it has been possible to identify most of the major chloroplast membrane polypeptides. PMID:667027

  14. Membrane proteins: always an insoluble problem?

    PubMed

    Rawlings, Andrea E

    2016-06-15

    Membrane proteins play crucial roles in cellular processes and are often important pharmacological drug targets. The hydrophobic properties of these proteins make full structural and functional characterization challenging because of the need to use detergents or other solubilizing agents when extracting them from their native lipid membranes. To aid membrane protein research, new methodologies are required to allow these proteins to be expressed and purified cheaply, easily, in high yield and to provide water soluble proteins for subsequent study. This mini review focuses on the relatively new area of water soluble membrane proteins and in particular two innovative approaches: the redesign of membrane proteins to yield water soluble variants and how adding solubilizing fusion proteins can help to overcome these challenges. This review also looks at naturally occurring membrane proteins, which are able to exist as stable, functional, water soluble assemblies with no alteration to their native sequence. PMID:27284043

  15. Membrane proteins: always an insoluble problem?

    PubMed Central

    Rawlings, Andrea E.

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins play crucial roles in cellular processes and are often important pharmacological drug targets. The hydrophobic properties of these proteins make full structural and functional characterization challenging because of the need to use detergents or other solubilizing agents when extracting them from their native lipid membranes. To aid membrane protein research, new methodologies are required to allow these proteins to be expressed and purified cheaply, easily, in high yield and to provide water soluble proteins for subsequent study. This mini review focuses on the relatively new area of water soluble membrane proteins and in particular two innovative approaches: the redesign of membrane proteins to yield water soluble variants and how adding solubilizing fusion proteins can help to overcome these challenges. This review also looks at naturally occurring membrane proteins, which are able to exist as stable, functional, water soluble assemblies with no alteration to their native sequence. PMID:27284043

  16. Nuclear magnetic resonance secondary shifts of a light-harvesting 2 complex reveal local backbone perturbations induced by its higher-order interactions.

    PubMed

    Pandit, Anjali; Wawrzyniak, Piotr K; van Gammeren, Adriaan J; Buda, Francesco; Ganapathy, Swapna; de Groot, Huub J M

    2010-01-26

    Protein nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) secondary chemical shifts are widely used to predict the secondary structure, and in solid-state NMR, they are often the only unambiguous structural parameters available. However, the employed prediction methods are empirical in nature, relying on the assumption that secondary shifts are only affected by shielding effects of neighboring atoms. We analyzed the secondary shifts of a photosynthetic membrane protein with a high density of chromophores and very tight packing, the light-harvesting 2 (LH2) complex of Rhodopseudomonas acidophila. A relation was found between secondary shift anomalies and protein-protein or pigment-protein tertiary and quaternary contacts. For several residues, including the bacteriochlorophyll-coordinating histidines (alphaH31 and betaH30) and the phenylalanine alphaF41 that has strongly twisted C(b)-C(a)-C and C(a)-C-N conformations in the LH2 crystal structure, the perturbing effects on the backbone chemical shifts were tested by density functional theory (DFT) calculations. We propose that higher-order interactions in the tightly packed complex can induce localized perturbations of the backbone conformation and electronic structure, related to functional pigment-protein or protein-protein interactions. PMID:19954238

  17. Compositional characteristics of a chloroform/methanol soluble protein fraction from spinach chloroplast membranes.

    PubMed

    Henriques, F; Park, R B

    1976-05-14

    Extraction of an aqueous suspension of spinach chloroplast lamellae with a chloroform/methanol mixture leads to solubilization of about 1/3 of the total membrane protein. Amino acid analysis of the chloroform/methanol-soluble protein shows that this fraction is largely enriched in the hydrophobic residues proline, leucine, alanine and phenylalanine and considerably depleted in polar amino acids, namely lysine and arginine. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of the solubilized material reveals the presence of a variety of low molecular weight polypeptides (molecular weight less than or equal to 25 000), with more than 50% of the total fraction being contributed by a 25 000 dalton band. This band, which accounts for about 25% of the total chloroplast lamellar protein, has recently been identified as the main component of the light-harvesting chlorophyll-protein complex. The physiological role of most of the chloroform/methanol-soluble protein fraction is not known at present. From its chemical properties and apparent biological inertness, we propose that it plays mainly a structural role in situ, interacting with the lipid moiety of the chloroplast membrane. The material insoluble in the aqueous chloroform/methanol mixture is largely enriched in manganese, iron, cytochrome and water-soluble proteins, such as chloroplast coupling factor and ribulose diphosphate carboxylase. PMID:179588

  18. Molecular and Interfacial Calculations of Iron(II) Light Harvesters.

    PubMed

    Fredin, Lisa A; Wärnmark, Kenneth; Sundström, Villy; Persson, Petter

    2016-04-01

    Iron-carbene complexes show considerable promise as earth-abundant light-harvesters, and adsorption onto nanostructured TiO2 is a crucial step for developing solar energy applications. Intrinsic electron injection capabilities of such promising Fe(II) N-heterocyclic complexes (Fe-NHC) to TiO2 are calculated here, and found to correlate well with recent experimental findings of highly efficient interfacial injection. First, we examine the special bonding characteristics of Fe-NHC light harvesters. The excited-state surfaces are examined using density functional theory (DFT) and time-dependent DFT (TD-DFT) to explore relaxed excited-state properties. Finally, by relaxing an Fe-NHC adsorbed on a TiO2 nanocluster, we show favorable injection properties in terms of interfacial energy level alignment and electronic coupling suitable for efficient electron injection of excited electrons from the Fe complex into the TiO2 conduction band on ∼100 fs time scales. PMID:27010851

  19. Green grasses as light harvesters in dye sensitized solar cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shanmugam, Vinoth; Manoharan, Subbaiah; Sharafali, A.; Anandan, Sambandam; Murugan, Ramaswamy

    2015-01-01

    Chlorophylls, the major pigments presented in plants are responsible for the process of photosynthesis. The working principle of dye sensitized solar cell (DSSC) is analogous to natural photosynthesis in light-harvesting and charge separation. In a similar way, natural dyes extracted from three types of grasses viz. Hierochloe Odorata (HO), Torulinium Odoratum (TO) and Dactyloctenium Aegyptium (DA) were used as light harvesters in dye sensitized solar cells (DSSCs). The UV-Vis absorption spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR), and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) were used to characterize the dyes. The electron transport mechanism and internal resistance of the DSSCs were investigated by the electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). The performance of the cells fabricated with the grass extract shows comparable efficiencies with the reported natural dyes. Among the three types of grasses, the DSSC fabricated with the dye extracted from Hierochloe Odorata (HO) exhibited the maximum efficiency. LC-MS investigations indicated that the dominant pigment present in HO dye was pheophytin a (Pheo a).

  20. Ultrafast energy relaxation in single light-harvesting complexes

    PubMed Central

    Malý, Pavel; Gruber, J. Michael; Cogdell, Richard J.; Mančal, Tomáš; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-01-01

    Energy relaxation in light-harvesting complexes has been extensively studied by various ultrafast spectroscopic techniques, the fastest processes being in the sub–100-fs range. At the same time, much slower dynamics have been observed in individual complexes by single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy (SMS). In this work, we use a pump–probe-type SMS technique to observe the ultrafast energy relaxation in single light-harvesting complexes LH2 of purple bacteria. After excitation at 800 nm, the measured relaxation time distribution of multiple complexes has a peak at 95 fs and is asymmetric, with a tail at slower relaxation times. When tuning the excitation wavelength, the distribution changes in both its shape and position. The observed behavior agrees with what is to be expected from the LH2 excited states structure. As we show by a Redfield theory calculation of the relaxation times, the distribution shape corresponds to the expected effect of Gaussian disorder of the pigment transition energies. By repeatedly measuring few individual complexes for minutes, we find that complexes sample the relaxation time distribution on a timescale of seconds. Furthermore, by comparing the distribution from a single long-lived complex with the whole ensemble, we demonstrate that, regarding the relaxation times, the ensemble can be considered ergodic. Our findings thus agree with the commonly used notion of an ensemble of identical LH2 complexes experiencing slow random fluctuations. PMID:26903650

  1. Ultrafast energy relaxation in single light-harvesting complexes.

    PubMed

    Malý, Pavel; Gruber, J Michael; Cogdell, Richard J; Mančal, Tomáš; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-03-15

    Energy relaxation in light-harvesting complexes has been extensively studied by various ultrafast spectroscopic techniques, the fastest processes being in the sub-100-fs range. At the same time, much slower dynamics have been observed in individual complexes by single-molecule fluorescence spectroscopy (SMS). In this work, we use a pump-probe-type SMS technique to observe the ultrafast energy relaxation in single light-harvesting complexes LH2 of purple bacteria. After excitation at 800 nm, the measured relaxation time distribution of multiple complexes has a peak at 95 fs and is asymmetric, with a tail at slower relaxation times. When tuning the excitation wavelength, the distribution changes in both its shape and position. The observed behavior agrees with what is to be expected from the LH2 excited states structure. As we show by a Redfield theory calculation of the relaxation times, the distribution shape corresponds to the expected effect of Gaussian disorder of the pigment transition energies. By repeatedly measuring few individual complexes for minutes, we find that complexes sample the relaxation time distribution on a timescale of seconds. Furthermore, by comparing the distribution from a single long-lived complex with the whole ensemble, we demonstrate that, regarding the relaxation times, the ensemble can be considered ergodic. Our findings thus agree with the commonly used notion of an ensemble of identical LH2 complexes experiencing slow random fluctuations. PMID:26903650

  2. Crystal structure of plant light-harvesting complex shows the active, energy-transmitting state

    PubMed Central

    Barros, Tiago; Royant, Antoine; Standfuss, Jörg; Dreuw, Andreas; Kühlbrandt, Werner

    2009-01-01

    Plants dissipate excess excitation energy as heat by non-photochemical quenching (NPQ). NPQ has been thought to resemble in vitro aggregation quenching of the major antenna complex, light harvesting complex of photosystem II (LHC-II). Both processes are widely believed to involve a conformational change that creates a quenching centre of two neighbouring pigments within the complex. Using recombinant LHC-II lacking the pigments implicated in quenching, we show that they have no particular role. Single crystals of LHC-II emit strong, orientation-dependent fluorescence with an emission maximum at 680 nm. The average lifetime of the main 680 nm crystal emission at 100 K is 1.31 ns, but only 0.39 ns for LHC-II aggregates under identical conditions. The strong emission and comparatively long fluorescence lifetimes of single LHC-II crystals indicate that the complex is unquenched, and that therefore the crystal structure shows the active, energy-transmitting state of LHC-II. We conclude that quenching of excitation energy in the light-harvesting antenna is due to the molecular interaction with external pigments in vitro or other pigment–protein complexes such as PsbS in vivo, and does not require a conformational change within the complex. PMID:19131972

  3. Characterization and deposition of various light-harvesting antenna complexes by electrospray atomization.

    PubMed

    Shah, Vivek B; Orf, Gregory S; Reisch, Sean; Harrington, Lucas B; Prado, Mindy; Blankenship, Robert E; Biswas, Pratim

    2012-11-01

    Photosynthetic organisms have light-harvesting complexes that absorb and transfer energy efficiently to reaction centers. Light-harvesting complexes (LHCs) have received increased attention in order to understand the natural photosynthetic process and also to utilize their unique properties in fabricating efficient artificial and bio-hybrid devices to capture solar energy. In this work, LHCs with different architectures, sizes, and absorption spectra, such as chlorosomes, Fenna-Matthews-Olson (FMO) protein, LH2 complex, and phycobilisome have been characterized by an electrospray-scanning mobility particle-sizer system (ES-SMPS). The size measured by ES-SMPS for FMO, chlorosomes, LH2, and phycobilisome were 6.4, 23.3, 9.5, and 33.4 nm, respectively. These size measurements were compared with values measured by dynamic light scattering and those reported in the literature. These complexes were deposited onto a transparent substrate by electrospray deposition. Absorption and fluorescence spectra of the deposited LHCs were measured. It was observed that the LHCs have light absorption and fluorescence spectra similar to that in solution, demonstrating the viability of the process. PMID:22983169

  4. Membrane tension and peripheral protein density mediate membrane shape transitions

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Zheng; Baumgart, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Endocytosis is a ubiquitous eukaryotic membrane budding, vesiculation, and internalization process fulfilling numerous roles including compensation of membrane area increase after bursts of exocytosis. The mechanism of the coupling between these two processes to enable homeostasis is not well understood. Recently, an ultrafast endocytosis (UFE) pathway was revealed with a speed significantly exceeding classical clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME). Membrane tension reduction is a potential mechanism by which endocytosis can be rapidly activated at remote sites. Here we provide experimental evidence for a mechanism whereby membrane tension reduction initiates membrane budding and tubulation mediated by endocytic proteins such as endophilin A1. We find that shape instabilities occur at well-defined membrane tensions and surface densities of endophilin. From our data, we obtain a membrane shape stability diagram that shows remarkable consistency with a quantitative model. This model applies to all laterally diffusive curvature coupling proteins and therefore a wide range of endocytic proteins. PMID:25569184

  5. Membrane tension and peripheral protein density mediate membrane shape transitions.

    PubMed

    Shi, Zheng; Baumgart, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Endocytosis is a ubiquitous eukaryotic membrane budding, vesiculation and internalization process fulfilling numerous roles including compensation of membrane area increase after bursts of exocytosis. The mechanism of the coupling between these two processes to enable homeostasis is not well understood. Recently, an ultrafast endocytosis (UFE) pathway was revealed with a speed significantly exceeding classical clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME). Membrane tension reduction is a potential mechanism by which endocytosis can be rapidly activated at remote sites. Here, we provide experimental evidence for a mechanism whereby membrane tension reduction initiates membrane budding and tubulation mediated by endocytic proteins, such as endophilin A1. We find that shape instabilities occur at well-defined membrane tensions and surface densities of endophilin. From our data, we obtain a membrane shape stability diagram that shows remarkable consistency with a quantitative model. This model applies to all laterally diffusive curvature-coupling proteins and therefore a wide range of endocytic proteins. PMID:25569184

  6. Membrane tension and peripheral protein density mediate membrane shape transitions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shi, Zheng; Baumgart, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Endocytosis is a ubiquitous eukaryotic membrane budding, vesiculation and internalization process fulfilling numerous roles including compensation of membrane area increase after bursts of exocytosis. The mechanism of the coupling between these two processes to enable homeostasis is not well understood. Recently, an ultrafast endocytosis (UFE) pathway was revealed with a speed significantly exceeding classical clathrin-mediated endocytosis (CME). Membrane tension reduction is a potential mechanism by which endocytosis can be rapidly activated at remote sites. Here, we provide experimental evidence for a mechanism whereby membrane tension reduction initiates membrane budding and tubulation mediated by endocytic proteins, such as endophilin A1. We find that shape instabilities occur at well-defined membrane tensions and surface densities of endophilin. From our data, we obtain a membrane shape stability diagram that shows remarkable consistency with a quantitative model. This model applies to all laterally diffusive curvature-coupling proteins and therefore a wide range of endocytic proteins.

  7. Higher Plant Photosystem II Light-Harvesting Antenna, Not the Reaction Center, Determines the Excited-State Lifetime—Both the Maximum and the Nonphotochemically Quenched

    PubMed Central

    Belgio, Erica; Johnson, Matthew P.; Jurić, Snježana; Ruban, Alexander V.

    2012-01-01

    The maximum chlorophyll fluorescence lifetime in isolated photosystem II (PSII) light-harvesting complex (LHCII) antenna is 4 ns; however, it is quenched to 2 ns in intact thylakoid membranes when PSII reaction centers (RCIIs) are closed (Fm). It has been proposed that the closed state of RCIIs is responsible for the quenching. We investigated this proposal using a new, to our knowledge, model system in which the concentration of RCIIs was highly reduced within the thylakoid membrane. The system was developed in Arabidopsis thaliana plants under long-term treatment with lincomycin, a chloroplast protein synthesis inhibitor. The treatment led to 1), a decreased concentration of RCIIs to 10% of the control level and, interestingly, an increased antenna component; 2), an average reduction in the yield of photochemistry to 0.2; and 3), an increased nonphotochemical chlorophyll fluorescence quenching (NPQ). Despite these changes, the average fluorescence lifetimes measured in Fm and Fm′ (with NPQ) states were nearly identical to those obtained from the control. A 77 K fluorescence spectrum analysis of treated PSII membranes showed the typical features of preaggregation of LHCII, indicating that the state of LHCII antenna in the dark-adapted photosynthetic membrane is sufficient to determine the 2 ns Fm lifetime. Therefore, we conclude that the closed RCs do not cause quenching of excitation in the PSII antenna, and play no role in the formation of NPQ. PMID:22735526

  8. Light harvesting and chloroplast electron transport in NADP-malic enzyme type C4 plants.

    PubMed

    Nakajima Munekage, Yuri

    2016-06-01

    The structure of thylakoids in chloroplasts and the organization of the electron transport chain changed dynamically during the evolution of C4 photosynthesis, especially in the nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADP)-malic enzyme type C4 species. Stacked grana membranes are strongly reduced in the bundle sheath chloroplasts of these plants, where photosystem II activity is diminished and cyclic electron transport around photosystem I mainly occurs. This change optimizes the ATP/NADPH production ratio in bundle sheath chloroplasts to drive the metabolic cycle of C4 photosynthesis. This review summarizes the current model of light harvesting and electron transport in the NADP-malic enzyme type C4 plants and discusses how it changed during the evolution of C4 photosynthesis. PMID:26999307

  9. Evidence for direct carotenoid involvement in the regulation of photosynthetic light harvesting

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Ying-Zhong; Holt, Nancy E.; Li, Xiao-Ping; Niyogi, Krishna K.; Fleming, Graham R.

    2003-01-01

    Nonphotochemical quenching (NPQ) refers to a process that regulates photosynthetic light harvesting in plants as a response to changes in incident light intensity. By dissipating excess excitation energy of chlorophyll molecules as heat, NPQ balances the input and utilization of light energy in photosynthesis and protects the plant against photooxidative damage. To understand the physical mechanism of NPQ, we have performed femtosecond transient absorption experiments on intact thylakoid membranes isolated from spinach and transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana plants. These plants have well defined quenching capabilities and distinct contents of xanthophyll (Xan) cycle carotenoids. The kinetics probed in the spectral region of the S1 → Sn transition of Xans (530–580 nm) were found to be significantly different under the quenched and unquenched conditions, corresponding to maximum and no NPQ, respectively. The lifetime and the spectral characteristics indicate that the kinetic difference originated from the involvement of the S1 state of a specific Xan, zeaxanthin, in the quenched case. PMID:12676997

  10. From light-harvesting to photoprotection: structural basis of the dynamic switch of the major antenna complex of plants (LHCII)

    PubMed Central

    Liguori, Nicoletta; Periole, Xavier; Marrink, Siewert J.; Croce, Roberta

    2015-01-01

    Light-Harvesting Complex II (LHCII) is largely responsible for light absorption and excitation energy transfer in plants in light-limiting conditions, while in high-light it participates in photoprotection. It is generally believed that LHCII can change its function by switching between different conformations. However, the underlying molecular picture has not been elucidated yet. The available crystal structures represent the quenched form of the complex, while solubilized LHCII has the properties of the unquenched state. To determine the structural changes involved in the switch and to identify potential quenching sites, we have explored the structural dynamics of LHCII, by performing a series of microsecond Molecular Dynamics simulations. We show that LHCII in the membrane differs substantially from the crystal and has the signatures that were experimentally associated with the light-harvesting state. Local conformational changes at the N-terminus and at the xanthophyll neoxanthin are found to strongly correlate with changes in the interactions energies of two putative quenching sites. In particular conformational disorder is observed at the terminal emitter resulting in large variations of the excitonic coupling strength of this chlorophyll pair. Our results strongly support the hypothesis that light-harvesting regulation in LHCII is coupled with structural changes. PMID:26493782

  11. Protein-Induced Membrane Curvature Alters Local Membrane Tension

    PubMed Central

    Rangamani, Padmini; Mandadap, Kranthi K.; Oster, George

    2014-01-01

    Adsorption of proteins onto membranes can alter the local membrane curvature. This phenomenon has been observed in biological processes such as endocytosis, tubulation, and vesiculation. However, it is not clear how the local surface properties of the membrane, such as membrane tension, change in response to protein adsorption. In this article, we show that the partial differential equations arising from classical elastic model of lipid membranes, which account for simultaneous changes in shape and membrane tension due to protein adsorption in a local region, cannot be solved for nonaxisymmetric geometries using straightforward numerical techniques; instead, a viscous-elastic formulation is necessary to fully describe the system. Therefore, we develop a viscous-elastic model for inhomogeneous membranes of the Helfrich type. Using the newly available viscous-elastic model, we find that the lipids flow to accommodate changes in membrane curvature during protein adsorption. We show that, at the end of protein adsorption process, the system sustains a residual local tension to balance the difference between the actual mean curvature and the imposed spontaneous curvature. We also show that this change in membrane tension can have a functional impact such as altered response to pulling forces in the presence of proteins. PMID:25099814

  12. Modeling coherent excitation energy transfer in photosynthetic light harvesting systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huo, Pengfei

    2011-12-01

    Recent non-linear spectroscopy experiments suggest the excitation energy transfer in some biological light harvesting systems initially occurs coherently. Treating such processes brings significant challenge for conventional theoretical tools that usually involve different approximations. In this dissertation, the recently developed Iterative Linearized Density Matrix (ILDM) propagation scheme, which is non-perturbative and non-Markovian is extended to study coherent excitation energy transfer in various light harvesting complexes. It is demonstrated that the ILDM approach can successfully describe the coherent beating of the site populations on model systems and gives quantitative agreement with both experimental results and the results of other theoretical methods have been developed recently to going beyond the usual approximations, thus providing a new reliable theoretical tool to study this phenomenon. This approach is used to investigate the excited energy transfer dynamics in various experimentally studied bacteria light harvesting complexes, such as Fenna-Matthews-Olsen (FMO) complex, Phycocyanin 645 (PC645). In these model calculations, quantitative agreement is found between computed de-coherence times and quantum beating pattens observed in the non-linear spectroscopy. As a result of these studies, it is concluded that the stochastic resonance behavior is important in determining the optimal throughput. To begin addressing possible mechanics for observed long de-coherence time, various models which include correlation between site energy fluctuations as well as correlation between site energy and inter-site coupling are developed. The influence of both types of correlation on the coherence and transfer rate is explored using with a two state system-bath hamiltonian parametrized to model the reaction center of Rhodobacter sphaeroides bacteria. To overcome the disadvantages of a fully reduced approach or a full propagation method, a brownian dynamics

  13. Solid State NMR and Protein-Protein Interactions in Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Miao, Yimin; Cross, Timothy A.

    2013-01-01

    Solid state NMR spectroscopy has evolved rapidly in recent years into an excellent tool for the characterization of membrane proteins and their complexes. In the past few years it has also become clear that the structure of membrane proteins, especially helical membrane proteins is determined, in part, by the membrane environment. Therefore, the modeling of this environment by a liquid crystalline lipid bilayer for solid state NMR has generated a unique tool for the characterization of native conformational states, local and global dynamics, and high resolution structure for these proteins. Protein-protein interactions can also benefit from this solid state NMR capability to characterize membrane proteins in a native-like environment. These complexes take the form of oligomeric structures and hetero-protein interactions both with water soluble proteins and other membrane proteins. PMID:24034903

  14. Solid state NMR and protein-protein interactions in membranes.

    PubMed

    Miao, Yimin; Cross, Timothy A

    2013-12-01

    Solid state NMR spectroscopy has evolved rapidly in recent years into an excellent tool for the characterization of membrane proteins and their complexes. In the past few years it has also become clear that the structure of membrane proteins, especially helical membrane proteins is determined, in part, by the membrane environment. Therefore, the modeling of this environment by a liquid crystalline lipid bilayer for solid state NMR has generated a unique tool for the characterization of native conformational states, local and global dynamics, and high-resolution structure for these proteins. Protein-protein interactions can also benefit from this solid state NMR capability to characterize membrane proteins in a native-like environment. These complexes take the form of oligomeric structures and hetero-protein interactions both with water-soluble proteins and other membrane proteins. PMID:24034903

  15. The Role of Exciton Delocalization in the Major Photosynthetic Light-Harvesting Antenna of Plants

    PubMed Central

    Ramanan, Charusheela; Gruber, J. Michael; Malý, Pavel; Negretti, Marco; Novoderezhkin, Vladimir; Krüger, Tjaart P.J.; Mančal, Tomáš; Croce, Roberta; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2015-01-01

    In the major peripheral plant light-harvesting complex LHCII, excitation energy is transferred between chlorophylls along an energetic cascade before it is transmitted further into the photosynthetic assembly to be converted into chemical energy. The efficiency of these energy transfer processes involves a complicated interplay of pigment-protein structural reorganization and protein dynamic disorder, and the system must stay robust within the fluctuating protein environment. The final, lowest energy site has been proposed to exist within a trimeric excitonically coupled chlorophyll (Chl) cluster, comprising Chls a610-a611-a612. We studied an LHCII monomer with a site-specific mutation resulting in the loss of Chls a611and a612, and find that this mutant exhibits two predominant overlapping fluorescence bands. From a combination of bulk measurements, single-molecule fluorescence characterization, and modeling, we propose the two fluorescence bands originate from differing conditions of exciton delocalization and localization realized in the mutant. Disruption of the excitonically coupled terminal emitter Chl trimer results in an increased sensitivity of the excited state energy landscape to the disorder induced by the protein conformations. Consequently, the mutant demonstrates a loss of energy transfer efficiency. On the contrary, in the wild-type complex, the strong resonance coupling and correspondingly high degree of excitation delocalization within the Chls a610-a611-a612 cluster dampens the influence of the environment and ensures optimal communication with neighboring pigments. These results indicate that the terminal emitter trimer is thus an essential design principle for maintaining the efficient light-harvesting function of LHCII in the presence of protein disorder. PMID:25762317

  16. Functionalizing Microporous Membranes for Protein Purification and Protein Digestion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dong, Jinlan; Bruening, Merlin L.

    2015-07-01

    This review examines advances in the functionalization of microporous membranes for protein purification and the development of protease-containing membranes for controlled protein digestion prior to mass spectrometry analysis. Recent studies confirm that membranes are superior to bead-based columns for rapid protein capture, presumably because convective mass transport in membrane pores rapidly brings proteins to binding sites. Modification of porous membranes with functional polymeric films or TiO2 nanoparticles yields materials that selectively capture species ranging from phosphopeptides to His-tagged proteins, and protein-binding capacities often exceed those of commercial beads. Thin membranes also provide a convenient framework for creating enzyme-containing reactors that afford control over residence times. With millisecond residence times, reactors with immobilized proteases limit protein digestion to increase sequence coverage in mass spectrometry analysis and facilitate elucidation of protein structures. This review emphasizes the advantages of membrane-based techniques and concludes with some challenges for their practical application.

  17. Identification of two quenching sites active in the regulation of photosynthetic light-harvesting studied by time-resolved fluorescence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holzwarth, Alfred R.; Miloslavina, Yuliya; Nilkens, Manuela; Jahns, Peter

    2009-12-01

    The regulation of light-harvesting (called non-photochemical quenching, NPQ) is an essential photoprotective mechanism active in plants. Total NPQ is dependent on PsbS, a pH-sensing protein, and on the action of the xanthophyll carotenoid zeaxanthin (Zx). Using ultrafast fluorescence on intact leaves we demonstrate two independent NPQ quenching sites in vivo which depend differently on the actions of PsbS and Zx. The first site is formed in the functionally detached major light-harvesting complex of PS II and depends strictly on PsbS. The second site is in the minor antennae of photosystem (PS) II and quenching depends on the presence of Zx.

  18. Artificial membranes for membrane protein purification, functionality and structure studies.

    PubMed

    Parmar, Mayuriben J; Lousa, Carine De Marcos; Muench, Stephen P; Goldman, Adrian; Postis, Vincent L G

    2016-06-15

    Membrane proteins represent one of the most important targets for pharmaceutical companies. Unfortunately, technical limitations have long been a major hindrance in our understanding of the function and structure of such proteins. Recent years have seen the refinement of classical approaches and the emergence of new technologies that have resulted in a significant step forward in the field of membrane protein research. This review summarizes some of the current techniques used for studying membrane proteins, with overall advantages and drawbacks for each method. PMID:27284055

  19. Population and coherence dynamics in light harvesting complex II (LH2)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yeh, Shu-Hao; Zhu, Jing; Kais, Sabre

    2012-08-01

    The electronic excitation population and coherence dynamics in the chromophores of the photosynthetic light harvesting complex 2 (LH2) B850 ring from purple bacteria (Rhodopseudomonas acidophila) have been studied theoretically at both physiological and cryogenic temperatures. Similar to the well-studied Fenna-Matthews-Olson (FMO) protein, oscillations of the excitation population and coherence in the site basis are observed in LH2 by using a scaled hierarchical equation of motion approach. However, this oscillation time (300 fs) is much shorter compared to the FMO protein (650 fs) at cryogenic temperature. Both environment and high temperature are found to enhance the propagation speed of the exciton wave packet yet they shorten the coherence time and suppress the oscillation amplitude of coherence and the population. Our calculations show that a long-lived coherence between chromophore electronic excited states can exist in such a noisy biological environment.

  20. Artificial light-harvesting arrays for solar energy conversion.

    PubMed

    Harriman, Anthony

    2015-07-28

    Solar fuel production, the process whereby an energy-rich substance is produced using electrons provided by water under exposure to sunlight, requires the cooperative accumulation of multiple numbers of photons. Identifying the optimum reagents is a difficult challenge, even without imposing the restriction that these same materials must function as both sensitiser and catalyst. The blockade caused by an inadequate supply of photons at the catalytic sites might be resolved by making use of an artificial light-harvesting array whose sole purpose is to funnel photons of appropriate frequency to the active catalyst, which can now be a dark reagent. Here we consider several types of artificial photon collectors built from fluorescent modules interconnected via electronic energy transfer. Emphasis is placed on the materials aspects and on establishing the basic operating principles. PMID:26086688

  1. Protein Homeostasis at the Plasma Membrane

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    The plasma membrane (PM) and endocytic protein quality control (QC) in conjunction with the endosomal sorting machinery either repairs or targets conformationally damaged membrane proteins for lysosomal/vacuolar degradation. Here, we provide an overview of emerging aspects of the underlying mechanisms of PM QC that fulfill a critical role in preserving cellular protein homeostasis in health and diseases. PMID:24985330

  2. Information for targeting to the chloroplastic inner envelope membrane is contained in the mature region of the maize Bt1-encoded protein

    SciTech Connect

    Li, H.M.; Sullivan, T.D.; Keegstra, K.

    1992-09-15

    Based on the protein sequence deduced from a cDNA clone, it has been proposed that the maize Bt1 locus encodes an amyloplast membrane metabolite translocator protein. The present work provides further evidence for this hypothesis by showing that the gene product of Bt1 could be imported into chloroplasts in vitro and processed to lower molecular weight mature proteins. More importantly, the imported mature proteins were localized to the inner envelope membrane, where metabolite tranlocators are located in plastids. In addition, the location of information for targeting to the inner membrane was investigated by constructing and analyzing the import of chimeric precursor proteins. A chimeric protein with the transit peptide of the precursor to the small subunit of ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase fused to the mature region of the Bt1-encoded protein was targeted to the inner envelope membrane of chloroplasts. Moreover, a chimeric protein with the transit peptide of the Bt1-encoded protein fused to the mature protein of the light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b binding protein was targeted to the thylakoid. These results indicate that the transit peptide of the Bt1-encoded protein functions primarily as a stromal targeting sequence. The information for targeting to the chloroplastic inner envelope membrane is contained in the mature region of the protein.

  3. Crystal Dehydration in Membrane Protein Crystallography.

    PubMed

    Sanchez-Weatherby, Juan; Moraes, Isabel

    2016-01-01

    Crystal dehydration has been successfully implemented to facilitate the structural solution of a number of soluble and membrane protein structures over the years. This chapter will present the currently available tools to undertake controlled crystal dehydration, focusing on some successful membrane protein cases. Also discussed here will be some practical considerations regarding membrane protein crystals and the relationship between different techniques in order to help researchers to select the most suitable technique for their projects. PMID:27553236

  4. Characterization of the Major Light-Harvesting Complexes (LHCBM) of the Green Alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii

    PubMed Central

    Natali, Alberto; Croce, Roberta

    2015-01-01

    Nine genes (LHCBM1-9) encode the major light-harvesting system of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Transcriptomic and proteomic analyses have shown that those genes are all expressed albeit in different amounts and some of them only in certain conditions. However, little is known about the properties and specific functions of the individual gene products because they have never been isolated. Here we have purified several complexes from native membranes and/or we have reconstituted them in vitro with pigments extracted from C. reinhardtii. It is shown that LHCBM1 and -M2/7 represent more than half of the LHCBM population in the membrane. LHCBM2/7 forms homotrimers while LHCBM1 seems to be present in heterotrimers. Trimers containing only type I LHCBM (M3/4/6/8/9) were also observed. Despite their different roles, all complexes have very similar properties in terms of pigment content, organization, stability, absorption, fluorescence and excited-state lifetimes. Thus the involvement of LHCBM1 in non-photochemical quenching is suggested to be due to specific interactions with other components of the membrane and not to the inherent quenching properties of the complex. Similarly, the overexpression of LHCBM9 during sulfur deprivation can be explained by its low sulfur content as compared with the other LHCBMs. Considering the highly conserved biochemical and spectroscopic properties, the major difference between the complexes may be in their capacity to interact with other components of the thylakoid membrane. PMID:25723534

  5. Serial Femtosecond Crystallography of Membrane Proteins.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Lan; Weierstall, Uwe; Cherezov, Vadim; Liu, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins, including G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs), constitute the most important drug targets. The increasing number of targets requires new structural information, which has proven tremendously challenging due to the difficulties in growing diffraction-quality crystals. Recent developments of serial femtosecond crystallography at X-ray free electron lasers combined with the use of membrane-mimetic gel-like matrix of lipidic cubic phase (LCP-SFX) for crystal growth and delivery hold significant promise to accelerate structural studies of membrane proteins. This chapter describes the development and current status of the LCP-SFX technology and elaborates its future role in structural biology of membrane proteins. PMID:27553241

  6. Class II virus membrane fusion proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Kielian, Margaret . E-mail: kielian@aecom.yu.edu

    2006-01-05

    Enveloped animal viruses fuse their membrane with a host cell membrane, thus delivering the virus genetic material into the cytoplasm and initiating infection. This critical membrane fusion reaction is mediated by a virus transmembrane protein known as the fusion protein, which inserts its hydrophobic fusion peptide into the cell membrane and refolds to drive the fusion reaction. This review describes recent advances in our understanding of the structure and function of the class II fusion proteins of the alphaviruses and flaviviruses. Inhibition of the fusion protein refolding reaction confirms its importance in fusion and suggests new antiviral strategies for these medically important viruses.

  7. Mapping membrane protein structure with fluorescence

    PubMed Central

    Taraska, Justin W.

    2012-01-01

    Membrane proteins regulate many cellular processes including signaling cascades, ion transport, membrane fusion, and cell-to-cell communications. Understanding the architecture and conformational fluctuations of these proteins is critical to understanding their regulation and functions. Fluorescence methods including intensity mapping, fluorescence resonance energy transfer, and photo-induced electron transfer, allow for targeted measurements of domains within membrane proteins. These methods can reveal how a protein is structured and how it transitions between different conformational states. Here, I will review recent work done using fluorescence to map the structures of membrane proteins, focusing on how each of these methods can be applied to understanding the dynamic nature of individual membrane proteins and protein complexes. PMID:22445227

  8. Membrane Protein Insertion at the Endoplasmic Reticulum

    PubMed Central

    Shao, Sichen; Hegde, Ramanujan S.

    2014-01-01

    Integral membrane proteins of the cell surface and most intracellular compartments of eukaryotic cells are assembled at the endoplasmic reticulum. Two highly conserved and parallel pathways mediate membrane protein targeting to and insertion into this organelle. The classical cotranslational pathway, utilized by most membrane proteins, involves targeting by the signal recognition particle followed by insertion via the Sec61 translocon. A more specialized posttranslational pathway, employed by many tail-anchored membrane proteins, is composed of entirely different factors centered around a cytosolic ATPase termed TRC40 or Get3. Both of these pathways overcome the same biophysical challenges of ferrying hydrophobic cargo through an aqueous milieu, selectively delivering it to one among several intracellular membranes and asymmetrically integrating its transmembrane domain(s) into the lipid bilayer. Here, we review the conceptual and mechanistic themes underlying these core membrane protein insertion pathways, the complexities that challenge our understanding, and future directions to over-come these obstacles. PMID:21801011

  9. Unlocking the eukaryotic membrane protein structural proteome

    PubMed Central

    Lee, John Kyongwon; Stroud, Robert Michael

    2012-01-01

    Summary Most of the 231 unique membrane protein structures (as of 3/2010) are of bacterial membrane proteins (MPs) expressed in bacteria, or eukaryotic MPs from natural sources. However eukaryotic membrane proteins, especially those with more than three membrane crossings rarely succumb to any suitable expression in bacterial cells. They typically require expression in eukaryotic cells that can provide appropriate endoplasmic reticulum, chaperones, targeting and post-translational processing. In evidence, only ~20 eukaryotic MP structures have resulted from heterologous expression. This is required for a general approach to target particular human or pathogen membrane proteins of importance to human health. The first of these appeared in 2005. Our review addresses the special issues that pertain to the expression of eukaryotic and human membrane proteins, and recent advances in the tool kit for crystallization and structure determination. PMID:20739007

  10. On improving the performance of nonphotochemical quenching in CP29 light-harvesting antenna complex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berman, Gennady P.; Nesterov, Alexander I.; Sayre, Richard T.; Still, Susanne

    2016-03-01

    We model and simulate the performance of charge-transfer in nonphotochemical quenching (NPQ) in the CP29 light-harvesting antenna-complex associated with photosystem II (PSII). The model consists of five discrete excitonic energy states and two sinks, responsible for the potentially damaging processes and charge-transfer channels, respectively. We demonstrate that by varying (i) the parameters of the chlorophyll-based dimer, (ii) the resonant properties of the protein-solvent environment interaction, and (iii) the energy transfer rates to the sinks, one can significantly improve the performance of the NPQ. Our analysis suggests strategies for improving the performance of the NPQ in response to environmental changes, and may stimulate experimental verification.

  11. Consequences of Decreased Light Harvesting Capability on Photosystem II Function in Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803

    PubMed Central

    Nagarajan, Aparna; Page, Lawrence E.; Liberton, Michelle; Pakrasi, Himadri B.

    2014-01-01

    Cyanobacteria use large pigment-protein complexes called phycobilisomes to harvest light energy primarily for photosystem II (PSII). We used a series of mutants with partial to complete reduction of phycobilisomes to examine the effects of antenna truncation on photosystem function in Synechocystis sp. PCC 6803. The antenna mutants CB, CK, and PAL expressed increasing levels of functional PSII centers to compensate for the loss of phycobilisomes, with a concomitant decrease in photosystem I (PSI). This increased PSII titer led to progressively higher oxygen evolution rates on a per chlorophyll basis. The mutants also exhibited impaired S-state transition profiles for oxygen evolution. Additionally, P700+ re-reduction rates were impacted by antenna reduction. Thus, a decrease in antenna size resulted in overall physiological changes in light harvesting and delivery to PSII as well as changes in downstream electron transfer to PSI. PMID:25513759

  12. Modeling Electronic-Nuclear Interactions for Excitation Energy Transfer Processes in Light-Harvesting Complexes.

    PubMed

    Lee, Mi Kyung; Coker, David F

    2016-08-18

    An accurate approach for computing intermolecular and intrachromophore contributions to spectral densities to describe the electronic-nuclear interactions relevant for modeling excitation energy transfer processes in light harvesting systems is presented. The approach is based on molecular dynamics (MD) calculations of classical correlation functions of long-range contributions to excitation energy fluctuations and a separate harmonic analysis and single-point gradient quantum calculations for electron-intrachromophore vibrational couplings. A simple model is also presented that enables detailed analysis of the shortcomings of standard MD-based excitation energy fluctuation correlation function approaches. The method introduced here avoids these problems, and its reliability is demonstrated in accurate predictions for bacteriochlorophyll molecules in the Fenna-Matthews-Olson pigment-protein complex, where excellent agreement with experimental spectral densities is found. This efficient approach can provide instantaneous spectral densities for treating the influence of fluctuations in environmental dissipation on fast electronic relaxation. PMID:27472379

  13. Circular dichroism spectroscopy of membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Miles, A J; Wallace, B A

    2016-09-21

    Circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy is a well-established technique for studying the secondary structures, dynamics, folding pathways, and interactions of soluble proteins, and is complementary to the high resolution but generally static structures produced by X-ray crystallography, NMR spectroscopy, and cryo electron microscopy. CD spectroscopy has special relevance for the study of membrane proteins, which are difficult to crystallise and largely ignored in structural genomics projects. However, the requirement for membrane proteins to be embedded in amphipathic environments such as membranes, lipid vesicles, detergent micelles, bicelles, oriented bilayers, or nanodiscs, in order for them to be soluble or dispersed in solution whilst maintaining their structure and function, necessitates the use of different experimental and analytical approaches than those employed for soluble proteins. This review discusses specialised methods for collecting and analysing membrane protein CD data, highlighting where protocols for soluble and membrane proteins diverge. PMID:27347568

  14. Phosphoinositide Control of Membrane Protein Function

    PubMed Central

    Logothetis, Diomedes E.; Petrou, Vasileios I.; Zhang, Miao; Mahajan, Rahul; Meng, Xuan-Yu; Adney, Scott K.; Cui, Meng; Baki, Lia

    2015-01-01

    Anionic phospholipids are critical constituents of the inner leaflet of the plasma membrane, ensuring appropriate membrane topology of transmembrane proteins. Additionally, in eukaryotes, the negatively charged phosphoinositides serve as key signals not only through their hydrolysis products but also through direct control of transmembrane protein function. Direct phosphoinositide control of the activity of ion channels and transporters has been the most convincing case of the critical importance of phospholipid-protein interactions in the functional control of membrane proteins. Furthermore, second messengers, such as [Ca2+]i, or posttranslational modifications, such as phosphorylation, can directly or allosterically fine-tune phospholipid-protein interactions and modulate activity. Recent advances in structure determination of membrane proteins have allowed investigators to obtain complexes of ion channels with phosphoinositides and to use computational and experimental approaches to probe the dynamic mechanisms by which lipid-protein interactions control active and inactive protein states. PMID:25293526

  15. Self-assembled light-harvesting peptide nanotubes for mimicking natural photosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jae Hong; Lee, Minah; Lee, Joon Seok; Park, Chan Beum

    2012-01-01

    Light-harvesting peptide nanotubes are synthesized by the self-assembly of diphenylalanine with THPP and platinum nanoparticles (nPt; see picture; TEOA = triethanolamine). The light-harvesting peptide nanotubes are suitable for mimicking photosynthesis because of their structure and electrochemical properties that are similar to the ones of photosystem I in natural photosynthesis. PMID:21976303

  16. Minor Antenna Proteins CP24 and CP26 Affect the Interactions between Photosystem II Subunits and the Electron Transport Rate in Grana Membranes of Arabidopsis[W

    PubMed Central

    de Bianchi, Silvia; Dall'Osto, Luca; Tognon, Giuseppe; Morosinotto, Tomas; Bassi, Roberto

    2008-01-01

    We investigated the function of chlorophyll a/b binding antenna proteins Chlorophyll Protein 26 (CP26) and CP24 in light harvesting and regulation of photosynthesis by isolating Arabidopsis thaliana knockout lines that completely lacked one or both of these proteins. All three mutant lines had a decreased efficiency of energy transfer from trimeric light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) to the reaction center of photosystem II (PSII) due to the physical disconnection of LHCII from PSII and formation of PSII reaction center depleted domains in grana partitions. Photosynthesis was affected in plants lacking CP24 but not in plants lacking CP26: the former mutant had decreased electron transport rates, a lower ΔpH gradient across the grana membranes, reduced capacity for nonphotochemical quenching, and limited growth. Furthermore, the PSII particles of these plants were organized in unusual two-dimensional arrays in the grana membranes. Surprisingly, overall electron transport, nonphotochemical quenching, and growth of the double mutant were restored to wild type. Fluorescence induction kinetics and electron transport measurements at selected steps of the photosynthetic chain suggested that limitation in electron transport was due to restricted electron transport between QA and QB, which retards plastoquinone diffusion. We conclude that CP24 absence alters PSII organization and consequently limits plastoquinone diffusion. PMID:18381925

  17. Minor antenna proteins CP24 and CP26 affect the interactions between photosystem II subunits and the electron transport rate in grana membranes of Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    de Bianchi, Silvia; Dall'Osto, Luca; Tognon, Giuseppe; Morosinotto, Tomas; Bassi, Roberto

    2008-04-01

    We investigated the function of chlorophyll a/b binding antenna proteins Chlorophyll Protein 26 (CP26) and CP24 in light harvesting and regulation of photosynthesis by isolating Arabidopsis thaliana knockout lines that completely lacked one or both of these proteins. All three mutant lines had a decreased efficiency of energy transfer from trimeric light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) to the reaction center of photosystem II (PSII) due to the physical disconnection of LHCII from PSII and formation of PSII reaction center depleted domains in grana partitions. Photosynthesis was affected in plants lacking CP24 but not in plants lacking CP26: the former mutant had decreased electron transport rates, a lower DeltapH gradient across the grana membranes, reduced capacity for nonphotochemical quenching, and limited growth. Furthermore, the PSII particles of these plants were organized in unusual two-dimensional arrays in the grana membranes. Surprisingly, overall electron transport, nonphotochemical quenching, and growth of the double mutant were restored to wild type. Fluorescence induction kinetics and electron transport measurements at selected steps of the photosynthetic chain suggested that limitation in electron transport was due to restricted electron transport between Q(A) and Q(B), which retards plastoquinone diffusion. We conclude that CP24 absence alters PSII organization and consequently limits plastoquinone diffusion. PMID:18381925

  18. Effects of protein crowding on membrane systems.

    PubMed

    Guigas, Gernot; Weiss, Matthias

    2016-10-01

    Cellular membranes are typically decorated with a plethora of embedded and adsorbed macromolecules, e.g. proteins, that participate in numerous vital processes. With typical surface densities of 30,000 proteins per μm(2) cellular membranes are indeed crowded places that leave only few nanometers of private space for individual proteins. Here, we review recent advances in our understanding of protein crowding in membrane systems. We first give a brief overview on state-of-the-art approaches in experiment and simulation that are frequently used to study crowded membranes. After that, we review how crowding can affect diffusive transport of proteins and lipids in membrane systems. Next, we discuss lipid and protein sorting in crowded membrane systems, including effects like protein cluster formation, phase segregation, and lipid droplet formation. Subsequently, we highlight recent progress in uncovering crowding-induced conformational changes of membranes, e.g. membrane budding and vesicle formation. Finally, we give a short outlook on potential future developments in the field of crowded membrane systems. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Biosimulations edited by Ilpo Vattulainen and Tomasz Róg. PMID:26724385

  19. Tandem Facial Amphiphiles for Membrane Protein Stabilization

    PubMed Central

    Chae, Pil Seok; Gotfryd, Kamil; Pacyna, Jennifer; Miercke, Larry J. W.; Rasmussen, Søren G. F.; Robbins, Rebecca A.; Rana, Rohini R.; Loland, Claus J.; Kobilka, Brian; Stroud, Robert; Byrne, Bernadette; Gether, Ulrik; Gellman, Samuel H.

    2010-01-01

    We describe a new type of synthetic amphiphile that is intended to support biochemical characterization of intrinsic membrane proteins. Members of this new family displayed favorable behavior with four of five membrane proteins tested, and these amphiphiles formed relatively small micelles. PMID:21049926

  20. Protein Solvation in Membranes and at Water-Membrane Interfaces

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pohorille, Andrew; Chipot, Christophe; Wilson, Michael A.

    2002-01-01

    Different salvation properties of water and membranes mediate a host of biologically important processes, such as folding, insertion into a lipid bilayer, associations and functions of membrane proteins. These processes will be discussed in several examples involving synthetic and natural peptides. In particular, a mechanism by which a helical peptide becomes inserted into a model membrane will be described. Further, the molecular mechanism of recognition and association of protein helical segments in membranes will be discussed. These processes are crucial for proper functioning of a cell. A membrane-spanning domain of glycophorin A, which exists as a helical dimer, serves as the model system. For this system, the free energy of dissociation of the helices is being determined for both the wild type and a mutant, in which dimerization is disrupted.

  1. Crystallization of Membrane protein under Microgravity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henning, C.; Frank, J.; Laubender, G.; Fromme, P.

    2002-01-01

    Proteins are biological molecules which catalyse all essential reactions of cells. The knowledge on the structure of these molecular machines is necessary for the understanding of their function. Many diseases are caused by defects of membrane proteins. In order to develop new medical therapies the construction principle of the proteins must be known. The main difficulty in the determination of the structure of these membrane protein complexes is the crystallisation. Membrane proteins are normally not soluble in water and have therefore to be solubilised from the membranes by use of detergents. The whole protein-detergent micelle must be crystallised to maintain the functional integrity of the protein complexes. These difficulties are the reasons for the fact that crystals of membrane proteins are difficult to grow and most of them are badly ordered, being not appropriate for X-ray structure analysis. The crystallisation of proteins under microgravity leads to the growth of better-ordered crystals by reduction of nucleation rate and the undisturbed growth of the hovering seeds by the absence of sedimentation and convection. The successful crystallistation of a membrane protein under microgravity has been performed during the space shuttle missions USML2 and STS95 in the Space Shuttle with Photosystem I as model protein. Photosystem I is a large membrane protein complex which catalyses one of the first and fundamental steps in oxygen photosynthesis. The crystals of Photosystem I, grown under microgravity were twenty times larger than all Photosystem I crystals which have been grown on earth. They were the basis for the determination of an improved X-ray structure of Photo- system I. These experiments opened the way for the structure enlightenment of more membrane proteins on the basis of microgravity experiments. On board of the International Space Station ideal conditions for the crystallisation of proteins under zero gravity are existing.

  2. PHOTOSYSTEM II PROTEIN33, a Protein Conserved in the Plastid Lineage, Is Associated with the Chloroplast Thylakoid Membrane and Provides Stability to Photosystem II Supercomplexes in Arabidopsis1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Fristedt, Rikard; Herdean, Andrei; Blaby-Haas, Crysten E.; Mamedov, Fikret; Lundin, Björn

    2015-01-01

    Photosystem II (PSII) is a multiprotein complex that catalyzes the light-driven water-splitting reactions of oxygenic photosynthesis. Light absorption by PSII leads to the production of excited states and reactive oxygen species that can cause damage to this complex. Here, we describe Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) At1g71500, which encodes a previously uncharacterized protein that is a PSII auxiliary core protein and hence is named PHOTOSYSTEM II PROTEIN33 (PSB33). We present evidence that PSB33 functions in the maintenance of PSII-light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) supercomplex organization. PSB33 encodes a protein with a chloroplast transit peptide and one transmembrane segment. In silico analysis of PSB33 revealed a light-harvesting complex-binding motif within the transmembrane segment and a large surface-exposed head domain. Biochemical analysis of PSII complexes further indicates that PSB33 is an integral membrane protein located in the vicinity of LHCII and the PSII CP43 reaction center protein. Phenotypic characterization of mutants lacking PSB33 revealed reduced amounts of PSII-LHCII supercomplexes, very low state transition, and a lower capacity for nonphotochemical quenching, leading to increased photosensitivity in the mutant plants under light stress. Taken together, these results suggest a role for PSB33 in regulating and optimizing photosynthesis in response to changing light levels. PMID:25511433

  3. DNA-Based Oligochromophores as Light-Harvesting Systems.

    PubMed

    Ensslen, Philipp; Brandl, Fabian; Sezi, Sabrina; Varghese, Reji; Kutta, Roger-Jan; Dick, Bernhard; Wagenknecht, Hans-Achim

    2015-06-22

    The chromophores ethynyl pyrene as blue, ethynyl perylene as green and ethynyl Nile red as red emitter were conjugated to the 5-position of 2'-deoxyuridine via an acetylene bridge. Using phosphoramidite chemistry on solid phase labelled DNA duplexes were prepared that bear single chromophore modifications, and binary and ternary combinations of these chromophore modifications. The steady-state and time-resolved fluorescence spectra of all three chromophores were studied in these modified DNA duplexes. An energy-transfer cascade occurs from ethynyl pyrene over ethynyl perylene to ethynyl Nile red and subsequently an electron-transfer cascade in the opposite direction (from ethynyl Nile red to ethynyl perylene or ethynyl pyrene, but not from ethynyl perylene to ethynyl pyrene). The electron-transfer processes finally provide charge separation. The efficiencies by these energy and electron-transfer processes can be tuned by the distances between the chromophores and the sequences. Most importantly, excitation at any wavelength between 350 and 700 nm finally leads to charge separated states which make these DNA samples promising candidates for light-harvesting systems. PMID:26069203

  4. Microscopic quantum coherence in a photosynthetic-light-harvesting antenna.

    PubMed

    Dawlaty, Jahan M; Ishizaki, Akihito; De, Arijit K; Fleming, Graham R

    2012-08-13

    We briefly review the coherent quantum beats observed in recent two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy experiments in a photosynthetic-light-harvesting antenna. We emphasize that the decay of the quantum beats in these experiments is limited by ensemble averaging. The in vivo dynamics of energy transport depends upon the local fluctuations of a single photosynthetic complex during the energy transfer time (a few picoseconds). Recent analyses suggest that it remains possible that the quantum-coherent motion may be robust under individual realizations of the environment-induced fluctuations contrary to intuition obtained from condensed phase spectroscopic measurements and reduced density matrices. This result indicates that the decay of the observed quantum coherence can be understood as ensemble dephasing. We propose a fluorescence-detected single-molecule experiment with phase-locked excitation pulses to investigate the coherent dynamics at the level of a single molecule without hindrance by ensemble averaging. We discuss the advantages and limitations of this method. We report our initial results on bulk fluorescence-detected coherent spectroscopy of the Fenna-Mathews-Olson complex. PMID:22753820

  5. IFITM Proteins Restrict Viral Membrane Hemifusion

    PubMed Central

    Golfetto, Ottavia; Bungart, Brittani; Li, Minghua; Ding, Shilei; He, Yuxian; Liang, Chen; Lee, James C.; Gratton, Enrico; Cohen, Fredric S.; Liu, Shan-Lu

    2013-01-01

    The interferon-inducible transmembrane (IFITM) protein family represents a new class of cellular restriction factors that block early stages of viral replication; the underlying mechanism is currently not known. Here we provide evidence that IFITM proteins restrict membrane fusion induced by representatives of all three classes of viral membrane fusion proteins. IFITM1 profoundly suppressed syncytia formation and cell-cell fusion induced by almost all viral fusion proteins examined; IFITM2 and IFITM3 also strongly inhibited their fusion, with efficiency somewhat dependent on cell types. Furthermore, treatment of cells with IFN also markedly inhibited viral membrane fusion and entry. By using the Jaagsiekte sheep retrovirus envelope and influenza A virus hemagglutinin as models for study, we showed that IFITM-mediated restriction on membrane fusion is not at the steps of receptor- and/or low pH-mediated triggering; instead, the creation of hemifusion was essentially blocked by IFITMs. Chlorpromazine (CPZ), a chemical known to promote the transition from hemifusion to full fusion, was unable to rescue the IFITM-mediated restriction on fusion. In contrast, oleic acid (OA), a lipid analog that generates negative spontaneous curvature and thereby promotes hemifusion, virtually overcame the restriction. To explore the possible effect of IFITM proteins on membrane molecular order and fluidity, we performed fluorescence labeling with Laurdan, in conjunction with two-photon laser scanning and fluorescence-lifetime imaging microscopy (FLIM). We observed that the generalized polarizations (GPs) and fluorescence lifetimes of cell membranes expressing IFITM proteins were greatly enhanced, indicating higher molecularly ordered and less fluidized membranes. Collectively, our data demonstrated that IFITM proteins suppress viral membrane fusion before the creation of hemifusion, and suggested that they may do so by reducing membrane fluidity and conferring a positive spontaneous

  6. Membrane Protein Crystallization Using Laser Irradiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adachi, Hiroaki; Murakami, Satoshi; Niino, Ai; Matsumura, Hiroyoshi; Takano, Kazufumi; Inoue, Tsuyoshi; Mori, Yusuke; Yamaguchi, Akihito; Sasaki, Takatomo

    2004-10-01

    We demonstrate the crystallization of a membrane protein using femtosecond laser irradiation. This method, which we call the laser irradiated growth technique (LIGHT), is useful for producing AcrB crystals in a solution of low supersaturation range. LIGHT is characterized by reduced nucleation times. This feature is important for crystallizing membrane proteins because of their labile properties when solubilized as protein-detergent micelles. Using LIGHT, high-quality crystals of a membrane transporter protein, AcrB, were obtained. The resulting crystals were found to be of sufficiently high resolution for X-ray diffraction. The results reported here indicate that LIGHT is a powerful tool for membrane protein crystallization, as well as for the growth of soluble proteins.

  7. Genome-wide Membrane Protein Structure Prediction

    PubMed Central

    Piccoli, Stefano; Suku, Eda; Garonzi, Marianna; Giorgetti, Alejandro

    2013-01-01

    Transmembrane proteins allow cells to extensively communicate with the external world in a very accurate and specific way. They form principal nodes in several signaling pathways and attract large interest in therapeutic intervention, as the majority pharmaceutical compounds target membrane proteins. Thus, according to the current genome annotation methods, a detailed structural/functional characterization at the protein level of each of the elements codified in the genome is also required. The extreme difficulty in obtaining high-resolution three-dimensional structures, calls for computational approaches. Here we review to which extent the efforts made in the last few years, combining the structural characterization of membrane proteins with protein bioinformatics techniques, could help describing membrane proteins at a genome-wide scale. In particular we analyze the use of comparative modeling techniques as a way of overcoming the lack of high-resolution three-dimensional structures in the human membrane proteome. PMID:24403851

  8. Multipass Membrane Protein Structure Prediction Using Rosetta

    PubMed Central

    Yarov-Yarovoy, Vladimir; Schonbrun, Jack; Baker, David

    2006-01-01

    We describe the adaptation of the Rosetta de novo structure prediction method for prediction of helical transmembrane protein structures. The membrane environment is modeled by embedding the protein chain into a model membrane represented by parallel planes defining hydrophobic, interface, and polar membrane layers for each energy evaluation. The optimal embedding is determined by maximizing the exposure of surface hydrophobic residues within the membrane and minimizing hydrophobic exposure outside of the membrane. Protein conformations are built up using the Rosetta fragment assembly method and evaluated using a new membrane-specific version of the Rosetta low-resolution energy function in which residue–residue and residue–environment interactions are functions of the membrane layer in addition to amino acid identity, distance, and density. We find that lower energy and more native-like structures are achieved by sequential addition of helices to a growing chain, which may mimic some aspects of helical protein biogenesis after translocation, rather than folding the whole chain simultaneously as in the Rosetta soluble protein prediction method. In tests on 12 membrane proteins for which the structure is known, between 51 and 145 residues were predicted with root-mean-square deviation <4Å from the native structure. PMID:16372357

  9. Functional dynamics of cell surface membrane proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nishida, Noritaka; Osawa, Masanori; Takeuchi, Koh; Imai, Shunsuke; Stampoulis, Pavlos; Kofuku, Yutaka; Ueda, Takumi; Shimada, Ichio

    2014-04-01

    Cell surface receptors are integral membrane proteins that receive external stimuli, and transmit signals across plasma membranes. In the conventional view of receptor activation, ligand binding to the extracellular side of the receptor induces conformational changes, which convert the structure of the receptor into an active conformation. However, recent NMR studies of cell surface membrane proteins have revealed that their structures are more dynamic than previously envisioned, and they fluctuate between multiple conformations in an equilibrium on various timescales. In addition, NMR analyses, along with biochemical and cell biological experiments indicated that such dynamical properties are critical for the proper functions of the receptors. In this review, we will describe several NMR studies that revealed direct linkage between the structural dynamics and the functions of the cell surface membrane proteins, such as G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs), ion channels, membrane transporters, and cell adhesion molecules.

  10. Inherently Tunable Electrostatic Assembly of Membrane Proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Liang, H.; Whited, G.; Nguyen, C.; Okerlund, A.; Stucky, G.D.

    2009-05-19

    Membrane proteins are a class of nanoscopic entities that control the matter, energy, and information transport across cellular boundaries. Electrostatic interactions are shown to direct the rapid co-assembly of proteorhodopsin (PR) and lipids into long-range crystalline arrays. The roles of inherent charge variations on lipid membranes and PR variants with different compositions are examined by tuning recombinant PR variants with different extramembrane domain sizes and charged amino acid substitutions, lipid membrane compositions, and lipid-to-PR stoichiometric ratios. Rational control of this predominantly electrostatic assembly for PR crystallization is demonstrated, and the same principles should be applicable to the assembly and crystallization of other integral membrane proteins.

  11. Light stress photodynamics of chlorophyll-binding proteins in Arabidopsis thaliana thylakoid membranes revealed by high-resolution mass spectrometric studies.

    PubMed

    Galetskiy, D N; Lohscheider, J N; Kononikhin, A S; Kharybin, O N; Popov, I A; Adamska, I; Nikolaev, E N

    2011-01-01

    In higher plants the light energy is captured by the photosynthetic pigments that are bound to photosystem I and II and their light-harvesting complex (LHC) subunits. In this study, we examined the photodynamic changes within chlorophyll-protein complexes in the thylakoid membrane of Arabidopsis thaliana leaves adapted to low light and subsequently exposed to light stress. Chlorophyll-protein complexes were isolated using sucrose density gradient centrifugation and blue-native polyacrylamid gel electrophoresis (BN-PAGE). Proteome analysis was performed using SDS-PAGE, HPLC and high resolution mass spectrometry. We identified several rarely expressed and stress-induced chlorophyll-binding proteins, showed changes in localization of early light-induced protein family and LHC protein family members between different photosynthetic complexes and assembled/disassembled subcomplexes under light stress conditions and discuss their role in a variety of light stress-related processes. PMID:21460887

  12. Active Nuclear Import of Membrane Proteins Revisited

    PubMed Central

    Laba, Justyna K.; Steen, Anton; Popken, Petra; Chernova, Alina; Poolman, Bert; Veenhoff, Liesbeth M.

    2015-01-01

    It is poorly understood how membrane proteins destined for the inner nuclear membrane pass the crowded environment of the Nuclear Pore Complex (NPC). For the Saccharomyces cerevisiae proteins Src1/Heh1 and Heh2, a transport mechanism was proposed where the transmembrane domains diffuse through the membrane while the extralumenal domains encoding a nuclear localization signal (NLS) and intrinsically disordered linker (L) are accompanied by transport factors and travel through the NPC. Here, we validate the proposed mechanism and explore and discuss alternative interpretations of the data. First, to disprove an interpretation where the membrane proteins become membrane embedded only after nuclear import, we present biochemical and localization data to support that the previously used, as well as newly designed reporter proteins are membrane-embedded irrespective of the presence of the sorting signals, the specific transmembrane domain (multipass or tail anchored), independent of GET, and also under conditions that the proteins are trapped in the NPC. Second, using the recently established size limit for passive diffusion of membrane proteins in yeast, and using an improved assay, we confirm active import of polytopic membrane protein with extralumenal soluble domains larger than those that can pass by diffusion on similar timescales. This reinforces that NLS-L dependent active transport is distinct from passive diffusion. Thirdly, we revisit the proposed route through the center of the NPC and conclude that the previously used trapping assay is, unfortunately, poorly suited to address the route through the NPC, and the route thus remains unresolved. Apart from the uncertainty about the route through the NPC, the data confirm active, transport factor dependent, nuclear transport of membrane-embedded mono- and polytopic membrane proteins in baker’s yeast. PMID:26473931

  13. Active Nuclear Import of Membrane Proteins Revisited.

    PubMed

    Laba, Justyna K; Steen, Anton; Popken, Petra; Chernova, Alina; Poolman, Bert; Veenhoff, Liesbeth M

    2015-01-01

    It is poorly understood how membrane proteins destined for the inner nuclear membrane pass the crowded environment of the Nuclear Pore Complex (NPC). For the Saccharomyces cerevisiae proteins Src1/Heh1 and Heh2, a transport mechanism was proposed where the transmembrane domains diffuse through the membrane while the extralumenal domains encoding a nuclear localization signal (NLS) and intrinsically disordered linker (L) are accompanied by transport factors and travel through the NPC. Here, we validate the proposed mechanism and explore and discuss alternative interpretations of the data. First, to disprove an interpretation where the membrane proteins become membrane embedded only after nuclear import, we present biochemical and localization data to support that the previously used, as well as newly designed reporter proteins are membrane-embedded irrespective of the presence of the sorting signals, the specific transmembrane domain (multipass or tail anchored), independent of GET, and also under conditions that the proteins are trapped in the NPC. Second, using the recently established size limit for passive diffusion of membrane proteins in yeast, and using an improved assay, we confirm active import of polytopic membrane protein with extralumenal soluble domains larger than those that can pass by diffusion on similar timescales. This reinforces that NLS-L dependent active transport is distinct from passive diffusion. Thirdly, we revisit the proposed route through the center of the NPC and conclude that the previously used trapping assay is, unfortunately, poorly suited to address the route through the NPC, and the route thus remains unresolved. Apart from the uncertainty about the route through the NPC, the data confirm active, transport factor dependent, nuclear transport of membrane-embedded mono- and polytopic membrane proteins in baker's yeast. PMID:26473931

  14. Evolutionary Changes in Chlorophyllide a Oxygenase (CAO) Structure Contribute to the Acquisition of a New Light-harvesting Complex in Micromonas*♦

    PubMed Central

    Kunugi, Motoshi; Takabayashi, Atsushi; Tanaka, Ayumi

    2013-01-01

    Chlorophyll b is found in photosynthetic prokaryotes and primary and secondary endosymbionts, although their light-harvesting systems are quite different. Chlorophyll b is synthesized from chlorophyll a by chlorophyllide a oxygenase (CAO), which is a Rieske-mononuclear iron oxygenase. Comparison of the amino acid sequences of CAO among photosynthetic organisms elucidated changes in the domain structures of CAO during evolution. However, the evolutionary relationship between the light-harvesting system and the domain structure of CAO remains unclear. To elucidate this relationship, we investigated the CAO structure and the pigment composition of chlorophyll-protein complexes in the prasinophyte Micromonas. The Micromonas CAO is composed of two genes, MpCAO1 and MpCAO2, that possess Rieske and mononuclear iron-binding motifs, respectively. Only when both genes were introduced into the chlorophyll b-less Arabidopsis mutant (ch1-1) was chlorophyll b accumulated, indicating that cooperation between the two subunits is required to synthesize chlorophyll b. Although Micromonas has a characteristic light-harvesting system in which chlorophyll b is incorporated into the core antennas of reaction centers, chlorophyll b was also incorporated into the core antennas of reaction centers of the Arabidopsis transformants that contained the two Micromonas CAO proteins. Based on these results, we discuss the evolutionary relationship between the structures of CAO and light-harvesting systems. PMID:23677999

  15. Surface-Cross-Linked Micelles as Multifunctionalized Organic Nanoparticles for Controlled Release, Light Harvesting, and Catalysis

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Surfactant micelles are dynamic entities with a rapid exchange of monomers. By “clicking” tripropargylammonium-containing surfactants with diazide cross-linkers, we obtained surface-cross-linked micelles (SCMs) that could be multifunctionalized for different applications. They triggered membrane fusion through tunable electrostatic interactions with lipid bilayers. Antenna chromophores could be installed on them to create artificial light-harvesting complexes with efficient energy migration among tens to hundreds of chromophores. When cleavable cross-linkers were used, the SCMs could break apart in response to redox or pH signals, ejecting entrapped contents quickly as a result of built-in electrostatic stress. They served as caged surfactants whose surface activity was turned on by environmental stimuli. They crossed cell membranes readily. Encapsulated fluorophores showed enhanced photophysical properties including improved quantum yields and greatly expanded Stokes shifts. Catalytic groups could be installed on the surface or in the interior, covalently attached or physically entrapped. As enzyme mimics, the SCMs enabled rational engineering of the microenvironment around the catalysts to afford activity and selectivity not possible with conventional catalysts. PMID:27181610

  16. Surface-Cross-Linked Micelles as Multifunctionalized Organic Nanoparticles for Controlled Release, Light Harvesting, and Catalysis.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yan

    2016-06-14

    Surfactant micelles are dynamic entities with a rapid exchange of monomers. By "clicking" tripropargylammonium-containing surfactants with diazide cross-linkers, we obtained surface-cross-linked micelles (SCMs) that could be multifunctionalized for different applications. They triggered membrane fusion through tunable electrostatic interactions with lipid bilayers. Antenna chromophores could be installed on them to create artificial light-harvesting complexes with efficient energy migration among tens to hundreds of chromophores. When cleavable cross-linkers were used, the SCMs could break apart in response to redox or pH signals, ejecting entrapped contents quickly as a result of built-in electrostatic stress. They served as caged surfactants whose surface activity was turned on by environmental stimuli. They crossed cell membranes readily. Encapsulated fluorophores showed enhanced photophysical properties including improved quantum yields and greatly expanded Stokes shifts. Catalytic groups could be installed on the surface or in the interior, covalently attached or physically entrapped. As enzyme mimics, the SCMs enabled rational engineering of the microenvironment around the catalysts to afford activity and selectivity not possible with conventional catalysts. PMID:27181610

  17. Helical Membrane Protein Conformations and their Environment

    PubMed Central

    Cross, Timothy A.; Murray, Dylan T.; Watts, Anthony

    2013-01-01

    Evidence that membrane proteins respond conformationally and functionally to their environment is gaining pace. Structural models, by necessity, have been characterized in preparations where the protein has been removed from its native environment. Different structural methods have used various membrane mimetics that have recently included lipid bilayers as a more native-like environment. Structural tools applied to lipid bilayer-embedded integral proteins are informing us about important generic characteristics of how membrane proteins respond to the lipid environment as compared with their response to other non-lipid environments. Here, we review the current status of the field, with specific reference to observations of some well-studied α-helical membrane proteins, as a starting point to aid the development of possible generic principals for model refinement. PMID:23996195

  18. Glasslike Membrane Protein Diffusion in a Crowded Membrane.

    PubMed

    Munguira, Ignacio; Casuso, Ignacio; Takahashi, Hirohide; Rico, Felix; Miyagi, Atsushi; Chami, Mohamed; Scheuring, Simon

    2016-02-23

    Many functions of the plasma membrane depend critically on its structure and dynamics. Observation of anomalous diffusion in vivo and in vitro using fluorescence microscopy and single particle tracking has advanced our concept of the membrane from a homogeneous fluid bilayer with freely diffusing proteins to a highly organized crowded and clustered mosaic of lipids and proteins. Unfortunately, anomalous diffusion could not be related to local molecular details given the lack of direct and unlabeled molecular observation capabilities. Here, we use high-speed atomic force microscopy and a novel analysis methodology to analyze the pore forming protein lysenin in a highly crowded environment and document coexistence of several diffusion regimes within one membrane. We show the formation of local glassy phases, where proteins are trapped in neighbor-formed cages for time scales up to 10 s, which had not been previously experimentally reported for biological membranes. Furthermore, around solid-like patches and immobile molecules a slower glass phase is detected leading to protein trapping and creating a perimeter of decreased membrane diffusion. PMID:26859708

  19. Membrane protein expression in Lactococcus lactis.

    PubMed

    King, Martin S; Boes, Christoph; Kunji, Edmund R S

    2015-01-01

    The Gram-positive bacterium Lactococcus lactis has many properties that are ideal for the overproduction of membrane proteins in a functional form. Growth of lactococci is rapid, proceeds to high cell densities, and does not require aeration, which facilitates large-scale fermentation. The available promoter systems are strong and tightly regulated, allowing expression of toxic gene products in a controlled manner. Expressed membrane proteins are targeted exclusively to the cytoplasmic membrane, allowing the use of ionophores, ligands, and inhibitors to study activity of the membrane protein in whole cells. Constructed plasmids are stable and expression levels are highly reproducible. The relatively small genome size of the organism causes little redundancy, which facilitates complementation studies and allows for easier purification. The produced membrane proteins are often stable, as the organism has limited proteolytic capability, and they are readily solubilized from the membrane with mild detergents. Lactococci are multiple amino acid auxotrophs, allowing the incorporation of labels, such as selenomethionine. Among the few disadvantages are the low transformation frequency, AT-rich codon usage, and resistance to lysis by mechanical means, but these problems can be overcome fairly easily. We will describe in detail the protocols used to express membrane proteins in L. lactis, from cloning of the target gene to the isolation of membrane vesicles for the determination of expression levels. PMID:25857778

  20. Polyene antibiotic that inhibits membrane transport proteins

    PubMed Central

    te Welscher, Yvonne Maria; van Leeuwen, Martin Richard; de Kruijff, Ben; Dijksterhuis, Jan; Breukink, Eefjan

    2012-01-01

    The limited therapeutic arsenal and the increase in reports of fungal resistance to multiple antifungal agents have made fungal infections a major therapeutic challenge. The polyene antibiotics are the only group of antifungal antibiotics that directly target the plasma membrane via a specific interaction with the main fungal sterol, ergosterol, often resulting in membrane permeabilization. In contrast to other polyene antibiotics that form pores in the membrane, the mode of action of natamycin has remained obscure but is not related to membrane permeabilization. Here, we demonstrate that natamycin inhibits growth of yeasts and fungi via the immediate inhibition of amino acid and glucose transport across the plasma membrane. This is attributable to ergosterol-specific and reversible inhibition of membrane transport proteins. It is proposed that ergosterol-dependent inhibition of membrane proteins is a general mode of action of all the polyene antibiotics, of which some have been shown additionally to permeabilize the plasma membrane. Our results imply that sterol-protein interactions are fundamentally important for protein function even for those proteins that are not known to reside in sterol-rich domains. PMID:22733749

  1. Polyene antibiotic that inhibits membrane transport proteins.

    PubMed

    te Welscher, Yvonne Maria; van Leeuwen, Martin Richard; de Kruijff, Ben; Dijksterhuis, Jan; Breukink, Eefjan

    2012-07-10

    The limited therapeutic arsenal and the increase in reports of fungal resistance to multiple antifungal agents have made fungal infections a major therapeutic challenge. The polyene antibiotics are the only group of antifungal antibiotics that directly target the plasma membrane via a specific interaction with the main fungal sterol, ergosterol, often resulting in membrane permeabilization. In contrast to other polyene antibiotics that form pores in the membrane, the mode of action of natamycin has remained obscure but is not related to membrane permeabilization. Here, we demonstrate that natamycin inhibits growth of yeasts and fungi via the immediate inhibition of amino acid and glucose transport across the plasma membrane. This is attributable to ergosterol-specific and reversible inhibition of membrane transport proteins. It is proposed that ergosterol-dependent inhibition of membrane proteins is a general mode of action of all the polyene antibiotics, of which some have been shown additionally to permeabilize the plasma membrane. Our results imply that sterol-protein interactions are fundamentally important for protein function even for those proteins that are not known to reside in sterol-rich domains. PMID:22733749

  2. Solid-state NMR and Membrane Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Opella, Stanley J.

    2015-01-01

    The native environment for a membrane protein is a phospholipid bilayer. Because the protein is immobilized on NMR timescales by the interactions within a bilayer membrane, solid-state NMR methods are essential to obtain high-resolution spectra. Approaches have been developed for both unoriented and oriented samples, however, they all rest on the foundation of the most fundamental aspects solid-state NMR, and the chemical shift and homo- and hetero-nuclear dipole-dipole interactions. Solid-state NMR has advanced sufficiently to enable the structures of membrane proteins to be determined under near-native conditions in phospholipid bilayers. PMID:25681966

  3. Biophysical EPR Studies Applied to Membrane Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Sahu, Indra D; Lorigan, Gary A

    2015-01-01

    Membrane proteins are very important in controlling bioenergetics, functional activity, and initializing signal pathways in a wide variety of complicated biological systems. They also represent approximately 50% of the potential drug targets. EPR spectroscopy is a very popular and powerful biophysical tool that is used to study the structural and dynamic properties of membrane proteins. In this article, a basic overview of the most commonly used EPR techniques and examples of recent applications to answer pertinent structural and dynamic related questions on membrane protein systems will be presented. PMID:26855825

  4. Membrane Protein Structure Determination Using Crystallography and Lipidic Mesophases - Recent Advances and Successes

    PubMed Central

    Caffrey, Martin; Li, Dianfan; Dukkipati, Abhiram

    2012-01-01

    The crystal structure of the β2-adrenergic receptor in complex with an agonist and its cognate G protein has just recently been solved. It is now possible to explore in molecular detail the means by which this paradigmatic transmembrane receptor binds agonist, communicates the impulse or signalling event across the membrane and sets in motion a series of G protein-directed intracellular responses. The structure was determined using crystals of the ternary complex grown in a rationally designed lipidic mesophase by the so-called in meso method. The method is proving to be particularly useful in the G protein-coupled receptor field where the structures of thirteen distinct receptor types have been solved in the past five years. In addition to receptors, the method has proven useful with a wide variety of integral membrane protein classes that include bacterial and eukaryotic rhodopsins, a light harvesting complex II (LHII), photosynthetic reaction centers, cytochrome oxidases, β-barrels, an exchanger, and an integral membrane peptide. This attests to the versatility and range of the method and supports the view that the in meso method should be included in the arsenal of the serious membrane structural biologist. For this to happen however, the reluctance in adopting it attributable, in part, to the anticipated difficulties associated with handling the sticky, viscous cubic mesophase in which crystals grow must be overcome. Harvesting and collecting diffraction data with the mesophase-grown crystals is also viewed with some trepidation. It is acknowledged that there are challenges associated with the method. Over the years, we have endeavored to establish how the method works at a molecular level and to make it user-friendly. To these ends, tools for handling the mesophase in the pico- to nano-liter volume range have been developed for highly efficient crystallization screening in manual and robotic modes. Methods have been implemented for evaluating the functional

  5. Towards Simulations of Outer Membrane Proteins in Lipopolysaccharide Membranes

    SciTech Connect

    Soares, Thereza A.; Straatsma, TP

    2007-12-26

    Biomolecular simulation derived properties of LPS membranes that impact the structural and internal dynamics of transmembrane proteins are shown to exhibit good agreement with available experimental data within the time scale simulated, chosen force field and simulation conditions. The molecular model used offers an accurate representation of the LPS layer, including the high asymmetry and low fluidity characteristics of outer membranes. This contribution describes the data intensive analysis of the large molecular time trajectories generated for these systems using massively parallel computing resources.

  6. Strong antenna-enhanced fluorescence of a single light-harvesting complex shows photon antibunching

    PubMed Central

    Wientjes, Emilie; Renger, Jan; Curto, Alberto G.; Cogdell, Richard; van Hulst, Niek F.

    2014-01-01

    The nature of the highly efficient energy transfer in photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes is a subject of intense research. Unfortunately, the low fluorescence efficiency and limited photostability hampers the study of individual light-harvesting complexes at ambient conditions. Here we demonstrate an over 500-fold fluorescence enhancement of light-harvesting complex 2 (LH2) at the single-molecule level by coupling to a gold nanoantenna. The resonant antenna produces an excitation enhancement of circa 100 times and a fluorescence lifetime shortening to ~\

  7. Membrane proteins: is the future disc shaped?

    PubMed

    Lee, Sarah C; Pollock, Naomi L

    2016-08-15

    The use of styrene maleic acid lipid particles (SMALPs) for the purification of membrane proteins (MPs) is a rapidly developing technology. The amphiphilic copolymer of styrene and maleic acid (SMA) disrupts biological membranes and can extract membrane proteins in nanodiscs of approximately 10 nm diameter. These discs contain SMA, protein and membrane lipids. There is evidence that MPs in SMALPs retain their native structures and functions, in some cases with enhanced thermal stability. In addition, the method is compatible with biological buffers and a wide variety of biophysical and structural analysis techniques. The use of SMALPs to solubilize and stabilize MPs offers a new approach in our attempts to understand, and influence, the structure and function of MPs and biological membranes. In this review, we critically assess progress with this method, address some of the associated technical challenges, and discuss opportunities for exploiting SMA and SMALPs to expand our understanding of MP biology. PMID:27528746

  8. EH domain proteins regulate cardiac membrane protein targeting

    PubMed Central

    Gudmundsson, Hjalti; Hund, Thomas J.; Wright, Patrick J.; Kline, Crystal F.; Snyder, Jedidiah S.; Qian, Lan; Koval, Olha M.; Cunha, Shane R.; George, Manju; Rainey, Mark A.; Kashef, Farshid E.; Dun, Wen; Boyden, Penelope A.; Anderson, Mark E.; Band, Hamid; Mohler, Peter J.

    2010-01-01

    Rationale Cardiac membrane excitability is tightly regulated by an integrated network of membrane-associated ion channels, transporters, receptors, and signaling molecules. Membrane protein dynamics in health and disease are maintained by a complex ensemble of intracellular targeting, scaffolding, recycling, and degradation pathways. Surprisingly, despite decades of research linking dysfunction in membrane protein trafficking with human cardiovascular disease, essentially nothing is known regarding the molecular identity or function of these intracellular targeting pathways in excitable cardiomyocytes. Objective We sought to discover novel pathways for membrane protein targeting in primary cardiomyocytes. Methods and Results We report the initial characterization of a large family of membrane trafficking proteins in human heart. We employed a tissue-wide screen for novel ankyrin-associated trafficking proteins and identified four members of a unique Eps15 homology (EH) domain-containing protein family (EHD1, EHD2, EHD3, EHD4) that serve critical roles in endosome-based membrane protein targeting in other cell types. We show that EHD1-4 directly associate with ankyrin, provide the first information on the expression and localization of these molecules in primary cardiomyocytes, and demonstrate that EHD1-4 are co-expressed with ankyrin-B in the myocyte perinuclear region. Notably, the expression of multiple EHD proteins is increased in animal models lacking ankyrin-B, and EHD3-deficient cardiomyocytes display aberrant ankyrin-B localization and selective loss of Na/Ca exchanger expression and function. Finally, we report significant modulation of EHD expression following myocardial infarction, suggesting that these proteins may play a key role in regulating membrane excitability in normal and diseased heart. Conclusions Our findings identify and characterize a new class of cardiac trafficking proteins, define the first group of proteins associated with the ankyrin

  9. Bacterial Light-Harvesting Complexes Showing Giant Second-Order Nonlinear Optical Response as Revealed by Hyper-Rayleigh Light Scattering.

    PubMed

    Ma, Fei; Yu, Long-Jiang; Ma, Xiao-Hua; Wang, Peng; Wang-Otomo, Zheng-Yu; Zhang, Jian-Ping

    2016-09-01

    The second-order nonlinear optical (NLO) properties of light-harvesting complexes (LHs) from the purple photosynthetic bacteria Thermochromatium (Tch.) tepidum were investigated for the first time by means of hyper-Rayleigh scattering (HRS). The carotenoid (Car) molecules bound to the isolated LH1 and LH2 proteins gave rise to second-harmonic scattering; however, they showed an opposite effect of the collective contribution from Car, that is, the first hyperpolarizability (β) reduced substantially from (10 510 ± 370) × 10(-30) esu for LH1 to (360 ± 120) × 10(-30) esu for LH2. Chromatophores of Tch. tepidum also showed a giant hyperpolarizability of (11 640 ± 630) × 10(-30) esu. On the basis of the structural information on bacterial LHs, it is found that the effective β of an LH is governed by the microenvironment and orientational correlation among the Car chromophores, which is concluded to be coherently enhanced for LH1. For LH2, however, additional destructive effects between different Car molecules may account for the small β value. This work demonstrates that LH1 and native membranes of purple bacteria can be potent NLO materials and that HRS is a promising spectroscopic means for investigating structural information of pigment-protein supramolecules. PMID:27505442

  10. Detergents in Membrane Protein Purification and Crystallisation.

    PubMed

    Anandan, Anandhi; Vrielink, Alice

    2016-01-01

    Detergents play a significant role in structural and functional characterisation of integral membrane proteins (IMPs). IMPs reside in the biological membranes and exhibit a great variation in their structural and physical properties. For in vitro biophysical studies, structural and functional analyses, IMPs need to be extracted from the membrane lipid bilayer environment in which they are found and purified to homogeneity while maintaining a folded and functionally active state. Detergents are capable of successfully solubilising and extracting the IMPs from the membrane bilayers. A number of detergents with varying structure and physicochemical properties are commercially available and can be applied for this purpose. Nevertheless, it is important to choose a detergent that is not only able to extract the membrane protein but also provide an optimal environment while retaining the correct structural and physical properties of the protein molecule. Choosing the best detergent for this task can be made possible by understanding the physical and chemical properties of the different detergents and their interaction with the IMPs. In addition, understanding the mechanism of membrane solubilisation and protein extraction along with crystallisation requirements, if crystallographic studies are going to be undertaken, can help in choosing the best detergent for the purpose. This chapter aims to present the fundamental properties of detergents and highlight information relevant to IMP crystallisation. The first section of the chapter reviews the physicochemical properties of detergents and parameters essential for predicting their behaviour in solution. The second section covers the interaction of detergents with the biologic membranes and proteins followed by their role in membrane protein crystallisation. The last section will briefly cover the types of detergent and their properties focusing on custom designed detergents for membrane protein studies. PMID:27553232

  11. Mass Spectrometry of Intact Membrane Protein Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Laganowsky, Arthur; Reading, Eamonn; Hopper, Jonathan T.S.; Robinson, Carol V.

    2014-01-01

    Mass spectrometry of intact soluble protein complexes has emerged as a powerful technique to study the stoichiometry, structure-function and dynamics of protein assemblies. Recent developments have extended this technique to the study of membrane protein complexes where it has already revealed subunit stoichiometries and specific phospholipid interactions. Here, we describe a protocol for mass spectrometry of membrane protein complexes. The protocol begins with preparation of the membrane protein complex enabling not only the direct assessment of stoichiometry, delipidation, and quality of the target complex, but also evaluation of the purification strategy. A detailed list of compatible non-ionic detergents is included, along with a protocol for screening detergents to find an optimal one for mass spectrometry, biochemical and structural studies. This protocol also covers the preparation of lipids for protein-lipid binding studies and includes detailed settings for a Q-ToF mass spectrometer after introduction of complexes from gold-coated nanoflow capillaries. PMID:23471109

  12. Detergent-Free Membrane Protein Purification.

    PubMed

    Rothnie, Alice J

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins are localized within a lipid bilayer; in order to purify them for functional and structural studies the first step must involve solubilizing or extracting the protein from these lipids. To date this has been achieved using detergents which disrupt the bilayer and bind to the protein in the transmembrane region. However finding conditions for optimal extraction, without destabilizing protein structure, is time consuming and expensive. Here we present a recently-developed method using a styrene-maleic acid (SMA) co-polymer instead of detergents. The SMA co-polymer extracts membrane proteins in a small disc of lipid bilayer which can be used for affinity chromatography purification, thus enabling the purification of membrane proteins while maintaining their native lipid bilayer environment. PMID:27485341

  13. Dielectrophoretic Sorting of Membrane Protein Nanocrystals

    PubMed Central

    Abdallah, Bahige G.; Chao, Tzu-Chiao; Kupitz, Christopher; Fromme, Petra; Ros, Alexandra

    2013-01-01

    Structure elucidation of large membrane protein complexes still comprises a considerable challenge yet is a key factor in drug development and disease combat. Femtosecond nanocrystallography is an emerging technique with which structural information of membrane proteins is obtained without the need to grow large crystals, thus overcoming the experimental riddle faced in traditional crystallography methods. Here, we demonstrate for the first time a microfluidic device capable of sorting membrane protein crystals based on size using dielectrophoresis. We demonstrate the excellent sorting power of this new approach with numerical simulations of selected sub-micrometer beads in excellent agreement with experimental observations. Crystals from batch crystallization broths of the huge membrane protein complex photosystem I were sorted without further treatment, resulting in a high degree of monodispersity and crystallinity in the ~ 100 nm size range. Microfluidic integration, continuous sorting, and nanometer-sized crystal fractions make this method ideal for direct coupling to femtosecond nanocrystallography. PMID:24004002

  14. Efficient preparation and analysis of membrane and membrane protein systems.

    PubMed

    Javanainen, Matti; Martinez-Seara, Hector

    2016-10-01

    Molecular dynamics (MD) simulations have become a highly important technique to consider lipid membrane systems, and quite often they provide considerable added value to laboratory experiments. Rapid development of both software and hardware has enabled the increase of time and size scales reachable by MD simulations to match those attainable by several accurate experimental techniques. However, until recently, the quality and maturity of software tools available for building membrane models for simulations as well as analyzing the results of these simulations have seriously lagged behind. Here, we discuss the recent developments of such tools from the end-users' point of view. In particular, we review the software that can be employed to build lipid bilayers and other related structures with or without embedded membrane proteins to be employed in MD simulations. Additionally, we provide a brief critical insight into force fields and MD packages commonly used for membrane and membrane protein simulations. Finally, we list analysis tools that can be used to study the properties of membrane and membrane protein systems. In all these points we comment on the respective compatibility of the covered tools. We also share our opinion on the current state of the available software. We briefly discuss the most commonly employed tools and platforms on which new software can be built. We conclude the review by providing a few ideas and guidelines on how the development of tools can be further boosted to catch up with the rapid pace at which the field of membrane simulation progresses. This includes improving the compatibility between software tools and promoting the openness of the codes on which these applications rely. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Biosimulations edited by Ilpo Vattulainen and Tomasz Róg. PMID:26947184

  15. NMR of Membrane Proteins: Beyond Crystals.

    PubMed

    Rajesh, Sundaresan; Overduin, Michael; Bonev, Boyan B

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins are essential for the flow of signals, nutrients and energy between cells and between compartments of the cell. Their mechanisms can only be fully understood once the precise structures, dynamics and interactions involved are defined at atomic resolution. Through advances in solution and solid state NMR spectroscopy, this information is now available, as demonstrated by recent studies of stable peripheral and transmembrane proteins. Here we highlight recent cases of G-protein coupled receptors, outer membrane proteins, such as VDAC, phosphoinositide sensors, such as the FAPP-1 pleckstrin homology domain, and enzymes including the metalloproteinase MMP-12. The studies highlighted have resulted in the determination of the 3D structures, dynamical properties and interaction surfaces for membrane-associated proteins using advanced isotope labelling strategies, solubilisation systems and NMR experiments designed for very high field magnets. Solid state NMR offers further insights into the structure and multimeric assembly of membrane proteins in lipid bilayers, as well as into interactions with ligands and targets. Remaining challenges for wider application of NMR to membrane structural biology include the need for overexpression and purification systems for the production of isotope-labelled proteins with fragile folds, and the availability of only a few expensive perdeuterated detergents.Step changes that may transform the field include polymers, such as styrene maleic acid, which obviate the need for detergent altogether, and allow direct high yield purification from cells or membranes. Broader demand for NMR may be facilitated by MODA software, which instantly predicts membrane interactive residues that can subsequently be validated by NMR. In addition, recent developments in dynamic nuclear polarization NMR instrumentation offer a remarkable sensitivity enhancement from low molarity samples and cell surfaces. These advances illustrate the current

  16. Surface recognition elements of membrane protein oligomerization.

    PubMed

    Rath, Arianna; Deber, Charles M

    2008-02-15

    Although certain membrane proteins are functional as monomeric polypeptides, others must assemble into oligomers to carry out their biological roles. High-resolution membrane protein structures provide a valuable resource for examining the sequence features that facilitate-or preclude-assembly of membrane protein monomers into multimeric structures. Here we have utilized a data set of 28 high-resolution alpha-helical membrane protein structures comprising 32 nonredundant polypeptides to address this issue. The lipid-exposed surfaces of membrane proteins that have reached their fully assembled and functional biological units have been compared with those of the individual subunits that build quaternary structures. Though the overall amino acid composition of each set of surfaces is similar, a key distinction-the distribution of small-xxx-small motifs-delineates subunits from membrane proteins that have reached a functioning oligomeric state. Quaternary structure formation may therefore be dictated by small-xxx-small motifs that are not satisfied by intrachain contacts. PMID:17729275

  17. Differences among coherent dynamics in evolutionary related light-harvesting complexes: evidence for subtle quantum-mechanical strategies for energy transfer optimization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Collini, E.

    2012-06-01

    In this work we exploit two-dimensional photon echo experiments (2DPE) to observe quantum coherence dynamics in energy transfer in light-harvesting proteins isolated from marine cryptophyte algae. Previous data, recorded on two complexes (PC645 and PE545) at room temperature, revealed exceptionally long lasting oscillations with distinct correlations and anti-correlations even at ambient temperature. These observations provided compelling evidence for quantum-coherent sharing of electronic excitation across the 5-nm-wide proteins under biologically relevant conditions, suggesting that distant molecules within the photosynthetic proteins are 'wired' together by quantum coherence for more efficient light-harvesting. In this work measurements performed on a different evolutionary related complex (PE555) at two excitation wavelengths are presented. The new results highlight different lifetimes for electronic coherences. Although preliminary, these evidences can be tentatively interpreted considering the difference in the protein structures.

  18. IRON-INDUCED CHANGES IN LIGHT HARVESTING AND PHOTOCHEMICAL ENERGY CONVERSION IN EUKARYOTIC MARINE ALGAE

    EPA Science Inventory

    The role of iron in regulating light harvesting and photochemical energy conversion process was examined in the marine unicellular chlorophyte Dunaliella tertiolecta and the marine diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum. In both species, iron limitation led to a reduction in cellular c...

  19. Enhancing light-harvesting power with coherent vibrational interactions: A quantum heat engine picture

    SciTech Connect

    Killoran, N.; Huelga, S. F.; Plenio, M. B.

    2015-10-21

    Recent evidence suggests that quantum effects may have functional importance in biological light-harvesting systems. Along with delocalized electronic excitations, it is now suspected that quantum coherent interactions with certain near-resonant vibrations may contribute to light-harvesting performance. However, the actual quantum advantage offered by such coherent vibrational interactions has not yet been established. We investigate a quantum design principle, whereby coherent exchange of single energy quanta between electronic and vibrational degrees of freedom can enhance a light-harvesting system’s power above what is possible by thermal mechanisms alone. We present a prototype quantum heat engine which cleanly illustrates this quantum design principle and quantifies its quantum advantage using thermodynamic measures of performance. We also demonstrate the principle’s relevance in parameter regimes connected to natural light-harvesting structures.

  20. Trimerization and crystallization of reconstituted light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b complex.

    PubMed Central

    Hobe, S; Prytulla, S; Kühlbrandt, W; Paulsen, H

    1994-01-01

    The major light-harvesting complex (LHCII) of photosystem II, the most abundant chlorophyll-containing complex in higher plants, is organized in trimers. In this paper we show that the trimerization of LHCII occurs spontaneously and is dependent on the presence of lipids. LHCII monomers were reconstituted from the purified apoprotein (LHCP), overexpressed in Escherichia coli, and pigments, purified from chloroplast membranes. These synthetic LHCII monomers trimerize in vitro in the presence of a lipid fraction isolated from pea thylakoids. The reconstituted LHCII trimers are very similar to native LHCII trimers in that they are stable in the presence of mild detergents and can be isolated by partially denaturing gel electrophoresis or by centrifugation in sucrose density gradients. Moreover, both native and reconstituted LHCII trimers exhibit signals in circular dichroism in the visible range that are not seen in native or reconstituted LHCII monomers, indicating that trimer formation either establishes additional pigment-pigment interactions or alters pre-existing interactions. Reconstituted LHCII trimers readily form two-dimensional crystals that appear to be identical to crystals of the native complex. Images PMID:8062818

  1. Electronic Structure and Dynamics of Higher-Lying Excited States in Light Harvesting Complex 1 from Rhodobacter sphaeroides.

    PubMed

    Dahlberg, Peter D; Ting, Po-Chieh; Massey, Sara C; Martin, Elizabeth C; Hunter, C Neil; Engel, Gregory S

    2016-06-23

    Light harvesting in photosynthetic organisms involves efficient transfer of energy from peripheral antenna complexes to core antenna complexes, and ultimately to the reaction center where charge separation drives downstream photosynthetic processes. Antenna complexes contain many strongly coupled chromophores, which complicates analysis of their electronic structure. Two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy (2DES) provides information on energetic coupling and ultrafast energy transfer dynamics, making the technique well suited for the study of photosynthetic antennae. Here, we present 2DES results on excited state properties and dynamics of a core antenna complex, light harvesting complex 1 (LH1), embedded in the photosynthetic membrane of Rhodobacter sphaeroides. The experiment reveals weakly allowed higher-lying excited states in LH1 at 770 nm, which transfer energy to the strongly allowed states at 875 nm with a lifetime of 40 fs. The presence of higher-lying excited states is in agreement with effective Hamiltonians constructed using parameters from crystal structures and atomic force microscopy (AFM) studies. The energy transfer dynamics between the higher- and lower-lying excited states agree with Redfield theory calculations. PMID:27232937

  2. Protein Stains to Detect Antigen on Membranes.

    PubMed

    Dsouza, Anil; Scofield, R Hal

    2015-01-01

    Western blotting (protein blotting/electroblotting) is the gold standard in the analysis of complex protein mixtures. Electroblotting drives protein molecules from a polyacrylamide (or less commonly, of an agarose) gel to the surface of a binding membrane, thereby facilitating an increased availability of the sites with affinity for both general and specific protein reagents. The analysis of these complex protein mixtures is achieved by the detection of specific protein bands on a membrane, which in turn is made possible by the visualization of protein bands either by chemical staining or by reaction with an antibody of a conjugated ligand. Chemical methods employ staining with organic dyes, metal chelates, autoradiography, fluorescent dyes, complexing with silver, or prelabeling with fluorophores. All of these methods have differing sensitivities and quantitative determinations vary significantly. This review will describe the various protein staining methods applied to membranes after western blotting. "Detection" precedes and is a prerequisite to obtaining qualitative and quantitative data on the proteins in a sample, as much as to comparing the protein composition of different samples. "Detection" is often synonymous to staining, i.e., the reversible or irreversible binding by the proteins of a colored organic or inorganic chemical. PMID:26139252

  3. Biophysical Characterization of Membrane Proteins in Nanodiscs

    PubMed Central

    Inagaki, Sayaka; Ghirlando, Rodolfo; Grisshammer, Reinhard

    2012-01-01

    Nanodiscs are self-assembled discoidal phospholipid bilayers surrounded and stabilized by membrane scaffold proteins (MSP), that have become a powerful and promising tool for the study of membrane proteins. Even though their reconstitution is highly regulated by the type of MSP and phospholipid input, a biophysical characterization leading to the determination of the stoichiometry of MSP, lipid and membrane protein is essential. This is important for biological studies, as the oligomeric state of membrane proteins often correlates with their functional activity. Typically combinations of several methods are applied using, for example, modified samples that incorporate fluorescent labels, along with procedures that result in nanodisc disassembly and lipid dissolution. To obtain a comprehensive understanding of the native properties of nanodiscs, modification-free analysis methods are required. In this work we provide a strategy, using a combination of dynamic light scattering and analytical ultracentrifugation, for the biophysical characterization of unmodified nanodiscs. In this manner we characterize the nanodisc preparation in terms of its overall polydispersity and characterize the hydrodynamically resolved nanodisc of interest in terms of its sedimentation coefficient, Stokes’ radius and overall protein and lipid stoichiometry. Functional and biological applications are also discussed for the study of the membrane protein embedded in nanodiscs under defined experimental conditions. PMID:23219517

  4. Insight into the Structure of Light Harvesting Complex II and its Stabilization in Detergent Solution

    SciTech Connect

    Cardoso, Mateus B; Smolensky, Dmitriy; Heller, William T; O'Neill, Hugh Michael

    2009-01-01

    The structure of spinach light-harvesting complex II (LHC II), stabilized in a solution of the detergent n-octyl-{beta}-d-glucoside (BOG), was investigated by small-angle neutron scattering (SANS). Physicochemical characterization of the isolated complex indicated that it was pure (>95%) and also in its native trimeric state. SANS with contrast variation was used to investigate the properties of the protein-detergent complex at three different H{sub 2}O/D{sub 2}O contrast match points, enabling the scattering properties of the protein and detergent to be investigated independently. The topological shape of LHC II, determined using ab initio shape restoration methods from the SANS data at the contrast match point of BOG, was consistent with the X-ray crystallographic structure of LHC II (Liu et al. Nature 2004 428, 287-292). The interactions of the protein and detergent were investigated at the contrast match point for the protein and also in 100% D{sub 2}O. The data suggested that BOG micelle structure was altered by its interaction with LHC II, but large aggregate structures were not formed. Indirect Fourier transform analysis of the LHC II/BOG scattering curves showed that the increase in the maximum dimension of the protein-detergent complex was consistent with the presence of a monolayer of detergent surrounding the protein. A model of the LHC II/BOG complex was generated to interpret the measurements made in 100% D{sub 2}O. This model adequately reproduced the overall size of the LHC II/BOG complex, but demonstrated that the detergent does not have a highly regular shape that surrounds the hydrophobic periphery of LHC II. In addition to demonstrating that natively structured LHC II can be produced for functional characterization and for use in artificial solar energy applications, the analysis and modeling approaches described here can be used for characterizing detergent-associated {alpha}-helical transmembrane proteins.

  5. Selective repression of light harvesting complex 2 formation in Rhodobacter azotoformans by light under semiaerobic conditions.

    PubMed

    Yue, Huiying; Zhao, Chungui; Li, Kai; Yang, Suping

    2015-11-01

    Photosystem formation in anaerobic anoxygenic phototrophic bacteria (APB) is repressed by oxygen but is de-repressed when oxygen tension decreases. Under semiaerobic conditions, the synthesis of photopigments and pigment protein complexes in Rhodobacter (Rba.) sphaeroides are repressed by light. AppA, a blue-light receptor, mediates this regulation. In the present study, it was showed that the synthesis of bacteriochlorophyll, carotenoid, and pigment protein complexes in Rba. azotoformans 134K20 was significantly repressed by oxygen. Oxygen exposure also led to a conversion of spheroidene to spheroidenone. In semiaerobically growing cells, light irradiation resulted in a decrease in the formation of photosystem, and blue light was found to be the most effective light source. Blue light reduced the contents of bacteriochlorophyll and carotenoid slightly, but had negligible effects on light harvesting complex (LH) 1 content, whereas the content of LH2 was significantly decreased indicating that blue light selectively repressed the synthesis of LH2 in semiaerobically growing 134K20. It was concluded that, similar to Rba. sphaeroides, a blue light receptor presented in strain 134K20 played important roles in its light-dependent repression. A possible mechanism involved in controlling the differential inhibitory of blue light on the synthesis of photosystem was discussed. PMID:26193456

  6. Chlorophylls, ligands and assembly of light-harvesting complexes in chloroplasts.

    PubMed

    Hoober, J Kenneth; Eggink, Laura L; Chen, Min

    2007-01-01

    Chlorophyll (Chl) b serves an essential function in accumulation of light-harvesting complexes (LHCs) in plants. In this article, this role of Chl b is explored by considering the properties of Chls and the ligands with which they interact in the complexes. The overall properties of the Chls, not only their spectral features, are altered as consequences of chemical modifications on the periphery of the molecules. Important modifications are introduction of oxygen atoms at specific locations and reduction or desaturation of sidechains. These modifications influence formation of coordination bonds by which the central Mg atom, the Lewis acid, of Chl molecules interacts with amino acid sidechains, as the Lewis base, in proteins. Chl a is a versatile Lewis acid and interacts principally with imidazole groups but also with sidechain amides and water. The 7-formyl group on Chl b withdraws electron density toward the periphery of the molecule and consequently the positive Mg is less shielded by the molecular electron cloud than in Chl a. Chl b thus tends to form electrostatic bonds with Lewis bases with a fixed dipole, such as water and, in particular, peptide backbone carbonyl groups. The coordination bonds are enhanced by H-bonds between the protein and the 7-formyl group. These additional strong interactions with Chl b are necessary to achieve assembly of stable LHCs. PMID:17505910

  7. Spectroscopic elucidation of uncoupled transition energies in the major photosynthetic light-harvesting complex, LHCII

    PubMed Central

    Schlau-Cohen, Gabriela S.; Calhoun, Tessa R.; Ginsberg, Naomi S.; Ballottari, Matteo; Bassi, Roberto; Fleming, Graham R.

    2010-01-01

    Electrostatic couplings between chromophores in photosynthetic pigment–protein complexes, and interactions of pigments with the surrounding protein environment, produce a complicated energy landscape of delocalized excited states. The resultant electronic structure absorbs light and gives rise to energy transfer steps that direct the excitation toward a site of charge separation with near unity quantum efficiency. Knowledge of the transition energies of the uncoupled chromophores is required to describe how the wave functions of the individual pigments combine to form this manifold of delocalized excited states that effectively harvests light energy. In an investigation of the major light-harvesting complex of photosystem II (LHCII), we develop a method based on polarized 2D electronic spectroscopy to experimentally access the energies of the S0–S1 transitions in the chromophore site basis. Rotating the linear polarization of the incident laser pulses reveals previously hidden off-diagonal features. We exploit the polarization dependence of energy transfer peaks to find the angles between the excited state transition dipole moments. We show that these angles provide a spectroscopic method to directly inform on the relationship between the delocalized excitons and the individual chlorophylls through the site energies of the uncoupled chromophores. PMID:20622154

  8. Intrinsically disordered proteins drive membrane curvature

    PubMed Central

    Busch, David J.; Houser, Justin R.; Hayden, Carl C.; Sherman, Michael B.; Lafer, Eileen M.; Stachowiak, Jeanne C.

    2015-01-01

    Assembly of highly curved membrane structures is essential to cellular physiology. The prevailing view has been that proteins with curvature-promoting structural motifs, such as wedge-like amphipathic helices and crescent-shaped BAR domains, are required for bending membranes. Here we report that intrinsically disordered domains of the endocytic adaptor proteins, Epsin1 and AP180 are highly potent drivers of membrane curvature. This result is unexpected since intrinsically disordered domains lack a well-defined three-dimensional structure. However, in vitro measurements of membrane curvature and protein diffusivity demonstrate that the large hydrodynamic radii of these domains generate steric pressure that drives membrane bending. When disordered adaptor domains are expressed as transmembrane cargo in mammalian cells, they are excluded from clathrin-coated pits. We propose that a balance of steric pressure on the two surfaces of the membrane drives this exclusion. These results provide quantitative evidence for the influence of steric pressure on the content and assembly of curved cellular membrane structures. PMID:26204806

  9. Intrinsically disordered proteins drive membrane curvature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Busch, David J.; Houser, Justin R.; Hayden, Carl C.; Sherman, Michael B.; Lafer, Eileen M.; Stachowiak, Jeanne C.

    2015-07-01

    Assembly of highly curved membrane structures is essential to cellular physiology. The prevailing view has been that proteins with curvature-promoting structural motifs, such as wedge-like amphipathic helices and crescent-shaped BAR domains, are required for bending membranes. Here we report that intrinsically disordered domains of the endocytic adaptor proteins, Epsin1 and AP180 are highly potent drivers of membrane curvature. This result is unexpected since intrinsically disordered domains lack a well-defined three-dimensional structure. However, in vitro measurements of membrane curvature and protein diffusivity demonstrate that the large hydrodynamic radii of these domains generate steric pressure that drives membrane bending. When disordered adaptor domains are expressed as transmembrane cargo in mammalian cells, they are excluded from clathrin-coated pits. We propose that a balance of steric pressure on the two surfaces of the membrane drives this exclusion. These results provide quantitative evidence for the influence of steric pressure on the content and assembly of curved cellular membrane structures.

  10. Class III viral membrane fusion proteins

    PubMed Central

    Backovic, Marija

    2010-01-01

    SUMMARY Accumulating structural studies of viral fusion glycoproteins have revealed unanticipated structural relationships between unrelated virus families and allowed the grouping of these membrane fusogens into three distinct classes. Here we review the newly identified group of class III viral fusion proteins, whose members include fusion proteins from rhabdoviruses, herpesviruses and baculoviruses. While clearly related in structure, the class III viral fusion proteins exhibit distinct structural features in their architectures as well as in their membrane-interacting fusion loops, which are likely related to their virus-specific differences in cellular entry. Further study of the similarities and differences in the class III viral fusion glycoproteins may provide greater insights into protein:membrane interactions that are key to promoting efficient bilayer fusion during virus entry. PMID:19356922

  11. Protein transfer to membranes upon shape deformation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sagis, L. M. C.; Bijl, E.; Antono, L.; de Ruijter, N. C. A.; van Valenberg, H.

    2013-05-01

    Red blood cells, milk fat droplets, or liposomes all have interfaces consisting of lipid membranes. These particles show significant shape deformations as a result of flow. Here we show that these shape deformations can induce adsorption of proteins to the membrane. Red blood cell deformability is an important factor in several diseases involving obstructions of the microcirculatory system, and deformation induced protein adsorption will alter the rigidity of their membranes. Deformation induced protein transfer will also affect adsorption of cells onto implant surfaces, and the performance of liposome based controlled release systems. Quantitative models describing this phenomenon in biomaterials do not exist. Using a simple quantitative model, we provide new insight in this phenomenon. We present data that show convincingly that for cells or droplets with diameters upwards of a few micrometers, shape deformations induce adsorption of proteins at their interface even at moderate flow rates.

  12. Helix insertion into bilayers and the evolution of membrane proteins

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Polytopic α-helical membrane proteins cannot spontaneously insert into lipid bilayers without assistance from polytopic α-helical membrane proteins that already reside in the membrane. This raises the question of how these proteins evolved. Our current knowledge of the insertion of α-helices into natural and model membranes is reviewed with the goal of gaining insight into the evolution of membrane proteins. Topics include: translocon-dependent membrane protein insertion, antibiotic peptides and proteins, in vitro insertion of membrane proteins, chaperone-mediated insertion of transmembrane helices, and C-terminal tail-anchored (TA) proteins. Analysis of the E. coli genome reveals several predicted C-terminal TA proteins that may be descendents of proteins involved in pre-cellular membrane protein insertion. Mechanisms of pre-translocon polytopic α-helical membrane protein insertion are discussed. PMID:20039094

  13. Protein separation using an electrically tunable membrane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jou, Ining; Melnikov, Dmitriy; Gracheva, Maria

    Separation of small proteins by charge with a solid-state porous membrane requires control over the protein's movement. Semiconductor membrane has this ability due to the electrically tunable electric potential profile inside the nanopore. In this work we investigate the possibility to separate the solution of two similar sized proteins by charge. As an example, we consider two small globular proteins abundant in humans: insulin (negatively charged) and ubiquitin (neutral). We find that the localized electric field inside the pore either attracts or repels the charged protein to or from the pore wall which affects the delay time before a successful translocation of the protein through the nanopore. However, the motion of the uncharged ubiquitin is unaffected. The difference in the delay time (and hence the separation) can be further increased by the application of the electrolyte bias which induces an electroosmotic flow in the pore. NSF DMR and CBET Grant No. 1352218.

  14. Crystallization of Membrane Proteins by Vapor Diffusion

    PubMed Central

    Delmar, Jared A.; Bolla, Jani Reddy; Su, Chih-Chia; Yu, Edward W.

    2016-01-01

    X-ray crystallography remains the most robust method to determine protein structure at the atomic level. However, the bottlenecks of protein expression and purification often discourage further study. In this chapter, we address the most common problems encountered at these stages. Based on our experiences in expressing and purifying antimicrobial efflux proteins, we explain how a pure and homogenous protein sample can be successfully crystallized by the vapor diffusion method. We present our current protocols and methodologies for this technique. Case studies show step-by-step how we have overcome problems related to expression and diffraction, eventually producing high quality membrane protein crystals for structural determinations. It is our hope that a rational approach can be made of the often anecdotal process of membrane protein crystallization. PMID:25950974

  15. Membrane protein structure from rotational diffusion☆

    PubMed Central

    Das, Bibhuti B.; Park, Sang Ho; Opella, Stanley J.

    2014-01-01

    The motional averaging of powder pattern line shapes is one of the most fundamental aspects of sold-state NMR. Since membrane proteins in liquid crystalline phospholipid bilayers undergo fast rotational diffusion, all of the signals reflect the angles of the principal axes of their dipole–dipole and chemical shift tensors with respect to the axis defined by the bilayer normal. The frequency span and sign of the axially symmetric powder patterns that result from motional averaging about a common axis provide sufficient structural restraints for the calculation of the three-dimensional structure of a membrane protein in a phospholipid bilayer environment. The method is referred to as rotationally aligned (RA) solid-state NMR and demonstrated with results on full-length, unmodified membrane proteins with one, two, and seven trans-membrane helices. RA solid-state NMR is complementary to other solid-state NMR methods, in particular oriented sample (OS) solid-state NMR of stationary, aligned samples. Structural distortions of membrane proteins from the truncations of terminal residues and other sequence modifications, and the use of detergent micelles instead of phospholipid bilayers have also been demonstrated. Thus, it is highly advantageous to determine the structures of unmodified membrane proteins in liquid crystalline phospholipid bilayers under physiological conditions. RA solid-state NMR provides a general method for obtaining accurate and precise structures of membrane proteins under near-native conditions. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: NMR Spectroscopy for Atomistic Views of Biomembranes and Cell Surfaces. PMID:24747039

  16. Breaking the barriers in membrane protein crystallography.

    PubMed

    Kang, Hae Joo; Lee, Chiara; Drew, David

    2013-03-01

    As we appreciate the importance of stabilising membrane proteins, the barriers towards their structure determination are being broken down. This change in mindset comes hand-in-hand with more effort placed on developing methods focused at screening for membrane proteins which are naturally stable in detergent solution or improving those that are not so. In practice, however, it is not easy to decide the best strategy to monitor and improve detergent stability, requiring a decision-making process that can be even more difficult for those new to the field. In this review we outline the importance of membrane protein stability with discussions of the stabilisation strategies applied in context with the use of crystallisation scaffolds and the different types of crystallisation methods themselves. Where possible we also highlight areas that we think could push this field forward with emerging technologies, such as X-ray free electron lasers (X-feL), which could have a big impact on the membrane protein structural biology community. We hope this review will serve as a useful guide for those striving to solve structures of both pro- and eukaryotic membrane proteins. PMID:23291355

  17. Curvature-mediated interactions between membrane proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Kim, K S; Neu, J; Oster, G

    1998-01-01

    Membrane proteins can deform the lipid bilayer in which they are embedded. If the bilayer is treated as an elastic medium, then these deformations will generate elastic interactions between the proteins. The interaction between a single pair is repulsive. However, for three or more proteins, we show that there are nonpairwise forces whose magnitude is similar to the pairwise forces. When there are five or more proteins, we show that the nonpairwise forces permit the existence of stable protein aggregates, despite their pairwise repulsions. PMID:9788923

  18. Identifying the hub proteins from complicated membrane protein network systems.

    PubMed

    Shen, Yi-Zhen; Ding, Yong-Sheng; Gu, Quan; Chou, Kuo-Chen

    2010-05-01

    The so-called "hub proteins" are those proteins in a protein-protein interaction network system that have remarkably higher interaction relations (or degrees) than the others. Therefore, the information of hub proteins can provide very useful insights for selecting or prioritizing targets during drug development. In this paper, by combining the multi-agent-based method with the graphical spectrum analysis and immune-genetic algorithm, a novel simulator for identifying the hub proteins from membrane protein interaction networks is proposed. As a demonstration of using the simulator, two hub membrane proteins, YPL227C and YIL147C, were identified from a complicated network system consisting of 1500 membrane proteins. Meanwhile, along with the two identified hub proteins, their molecular functions, biological processes, and cellular components were also revealed. It is anticipated that the hub-protein-simulator may become a very useful tool for system biology and drug development, particularly in deciphering unknown protein functions, determining protein complexes, and in identifying the key targets from a complicated disease system. PMID:20507268

  19. Tracing the evolution of the light-harvesting antennae in chlorophyll a/b-containing organisms.

    PubMed

    Koziol, Adam G; Borza, Tudor; Ishida, Ken-Ichiro; Keeling, Patrick; Lee, Robert W; Durnford, Dion G

    2007-04-01

    The light-harvesting complexes (LHCs) of land plants and green algae have essential roles in light capture and photoprotection. Though the functional diversity of the individual LHC proteins are well described in many land plants, the extent of this family in the majority of green algal groups is unknown. To examine the evolution of the chlorophyll a/b antennae system and to infer its ancestral state, we initiated several expressed sequence tag projects from a taxonomically broad range of chlorophyll a/b-containing protists. This included representatives from the Ulvophyceae (Acetabularia acetabulum), the Mesostigmatophyceae (Mesostigma viride), and the Prasinophyceae (Micromonas sp.), as well as one representative from each of the Euglenozoa (Euglena gracilis) and Chlorarachniophyta (Bigelowiella natans), whose plastids evolved secondarily from a green alga. It is clear that the core antenna system was well developed prior to green algal diversification and likely consisted of the CP29 (Lhcb4) and CP26 (Lhcb5) proteins associated with photosystem II plus a photosystem I antenna composed of proteins encoded by at least Lhca3 and two green algal-specific proteins encoded by the Lhca2 and 9 genes. In organisms containing secondary plastids, we found no evidence for orthologs to the plant/algal antennae with the exception of CP29. We also identified PsbS homologs in the Ulvophyceae and the Prasinophyceae, indicating that this distinctive protein appeared prior to green algal diversification. This analysis provides a snapshot of the antenna systems in diverse green algae, and allows us to infer the changing complexity of the antenna system during green algal evolution. PMID:17307901

  20. Model-building codes for membrane proteins.

    SciTech Connect

    Shirley, David Noyes; Hunt, Thomas W.; Brown, W. Michael; Schoeniger, Joseph S.; Slepoy, Alexander; Sale, Kenneth L.; Young, Malin M.; Faulon, Jean-Loup Michel; Gray, Genetha Anne

    2005-01-01

    We have developed a novel approach to modeling the transmembrane spanning helical bundles of integral membrane proteins using only a sparse set of distance constraints, such as those derived from MS3-D, dipolar-EPR and FRET experiments. Algorithms have been written for searching the conformational space of membrane protein folds matching the set of distance constraints, which provides initial structures for local conformational searches. Local conformation search is achieved by optimizing these candidates against a custom penalty function that incorporates both measures derived from statistical analysis of solved membrane protein structures and distance constraints obtained from experiments. This results in refined helical bundles to which the interhelical loops and amino acid side-chains are added. Using a set of only 27 distance constraints extracted from the literature, our methods successfully recover the structure of dark-adapted rhodopsin to within 3.2 {angstrom} of the crystal structure.

  1. Transmembrane protein sorting driven by membrane curvature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strahl, H.; Ronneau, S.; González, B. Solana; Klutsch, D.; Schaffner-Barbero, C.; Hamoen, L. W.

    2015-11-01

    The intricate structure of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells depends on the ability to target proteins to specific cellular locations. In most cases, we have a poor understanding of the underlying mechanisms. A typical example is the assembly of bacterial chemoreceptors at cell poles. Here we show that the classical chemoreceptor TlpA of Bacillus subtilis does not localize according to the consensus stochastic nucleation mechanism but accumulates at strongly curved membrane areas generated during cell division. This preference was confirmed by accumulation at non-septal curved membranes. Localization appears to be an intrinsic property of the protein complex and does not rely on chemoreceptor clustering, as was previously shown for Escherichia coli. By constructing specific amino-acid substitutions, we demonstrate that the preference for strongly curved membranes arises from the curved shape of chemoreceptor trimer of dimers. These findings demonstrate that the intrinsic shape of transmembrane proteins can determine their cellular localization.

  2. Transmembrane protein sorting driven by membrane curvature

    PubMed Central

    Strahl, H.; Ronneau, S.; González, B. Solana; Klutsch, D.; Schaffner-Barbero, C.; Hamoen, L. W.

    2015-01-01

    The intricate structure of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells depends on the ability to target proteins to specific cellular locations. In most cases, we have a poor understanding of the underlying mechanisms. A typical example is the assembly of bacterial chemoreceptors at cell poles. Here we show that the classical chemoreceptor TlpA of Bacillus subtilis does not localize according to the consensus stochastic nucleation mechanism but accumulates at strongly curved membrane areas generated during cell division. This preference was confirmed by accumulation at non-septal curved membranes. Localization appears to be an intrinsic property of the protein complex and does not rely on chemoreceptor clustering, as was previously shown for Escherichia coli. By constructing specific amino-acid substitutions, we demonstrate that the preference for strongly curved membranes arises from the curved shape of chemoreceptor trimer of dimers. These findings demonstrate that the intrinsic shape of transmembrane proteins can determine their cellular localization. PMID:26522943

  3. Atomic-level analysis of membrane-protein structure.

    PubMed

    Hendrickson, Wayne A

    2016-06-01

    Membrane proteins are substantially more challenging than natively soluble proteins as subjects for structural analysis. Thus, membrane proteins are greatly underrepresented in structural databases. Recently, focused consortium efforts and advances in methodology for protein production, crystallographic analysis and cryo-EM analysis have accelerated the pace of atomic-level structure determination of membrane proteins. PMID:27273628

  4. Lamellar Organization of Pigments in Chlorosomes, the Light Harvesting Complexes of Green Photosynthetic Bacteria

    PubMed Central

    Pšenčík, J.; Ikonen, T. P.; Laurinmäki, P.; Merckel, M. C.; Butcher, S. J.; Serimaa, R. E.; Tuma, R.

    2004-01-01

    Chlorosomes of green photosynthetic bacteria constitute the most efficient light harvesting complexes found in nature. In addition, the chlorosome is the only known photosynthetic system where the majority of pigments (BChl) is not organized in pigment-protein complexes but instead is assembled into aggregates. Because of the unusual organization, the chlorosome structure has not been resolved and only models, in which BChl pigments were organized into large rods, were proposed on the basis of freeze-fracture electron microscopy and spectroscopic constraints. We have obtained the first high-resolution images of chlorosomes from the green sulfur bacterium Chlorobium tepidum by cryoelectron microscopy. Cryoelectron microscopy images revealed dense striations ∼20 Å apart. X-ray scattering from chlorosomes exhibited a feature with the same ∼20 Å spacing. No evidence for the rod models was obtained. The observed spacing and tilt-series cryoelectron microscopy projections are compatible with a lamellar model, in which BChl molecules aggregate into semicrystalline lateral arrays. The diffraction data further indicate that arrays are built from BChl dimers. The arrays form undulating lamellae, which, in turn, are held together by interdigitated esterifying alcohol tails, carotenoids, and lipids. The lamellar model is consistent with earlier spectroscopic data and provides insight into chlorosome self-assembly. PMID:15298919

  5. Lamellar organization of pigments in chlorosomes, the light harvesting complexes of green photosynthetic bacteria.

    PubMed

    Psencík, J; Ikonen, T P; Laurinmäki, P; Merckel, M C; Butcher, S J; Serimaa, R E; Tuma, R

    2004-08-01

    Chlorosomes of green photosynthetic bacteria constitute the most efficient light harvesting complexes found in nature. In addition, the chlorosome is the only known photosynthetic system where the majority of pigments (BChl) is not organized in pigment-protein complexes but instead is assembled into aggregates. Because of the unusual organization, the chlorosome structure has not been resolved and only models, in which BChl pigments were organized into large rods, were proposed on the basis of freeze-fracture electron microscopy and spectroscopic constraints. We have obtained the first high-resolution images of chlorosomes from the green sulfur bacterium Chlorobium tepidum by cryoelectron microscopy. Cryoelectron microscopy images revealed dense striations approximately 20 A apart. X-ray scattering from chlorosomes exhibited a feature with the same approximately 20 A spacing. No evidence for the rod models was obtained. The observed spacing and tilt-series cryoelectron microscopy projections are compatible with a lamellar model, in which BChl molecules aggregate into semicrystalline lateral arrays. The diffraction data further indicate that arrays are built from BChl dimers. The arrays form undulating lamellae, which, in turn, are held together by interdigitated esterifying alcohol tails, carotenoids, and lipids. The lamellar model is consistent with earlier spectroscopic data and provides insight into chlorosome self-assembly. PMID:15298919

  6. Ultrafast spectroscopy of trimeric light-harvesting complex II from higher plants

    SciTech Connect

    Connelly, J.P.; Mueller, G.M.; Hucke, M.; Gatzen, G.; Holzwarth, A.R.; Mullineaux, C.W.; Ruban, A.V.; Horton, P.

    1997-03-06

    Time-resolved femtosecond transient absorption measurements have been carried out at room temperature on light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b protein complex of photosystem II (LHC II) trimers prepared from spinach. Exciting in the chlorophyll (Chl) b region at 650 nm with very low intensity, virtually annihilation-free two-color transient absorption measurement of the kinetics over 100 ps, between 645 and 690 nm, yield global lifetimes of 175 fs, 625 fs, and 5 ps and a long component (>=790 ps) where the three fastest lifetimes reflect Chl b to Chl a energy transfer. On the basis of these results and recent electron diffraction structural data, a preliminary three-pool Ch a, three-pool Chl b kinetic model is proposed. The possible influence of variable xanthophyll composition on quenching in LHC II preparations isolated from light- and dark-adapted leaves has been investigated using time-resolved picosecond fluorescence at room temperature. Global lifetimes of 5 ps and 3.6 ns, the lifetimes of the terminal LHC II excited state, were obtained. No discernable quenching effect due to the presence of zeaxanthin was observed. 38 refs., 6 figs., 3 tabs.

  7. Protein permeation through an electrically tunable membrane.

    PubMed

    Jou, Ining A; Melnikov, Dmitriy V; Gracheva, Maria E

    2016-05-20

    Protein filtration is important in many fields of science and technology such as medicine, biology, chemistry, and engineering. Recently, protein separation and filtering with nanoporous membranes has attracted interest due to the possibility of fast separation and high throughput volume. This, however, requires understanding of the protein's dynamics inside and in the vicinity of the nanopore. In this work, we utilize a Brownian dynamics approach to study the motion of the model protein insulin in the membrane-electrolyte electrostatic potential. We compare the results of the atomic model of the protein with the results of a coarse-grained and a single-bead model, and find that the coarse-grained representation of protein strikes the best balance between the accuracy of the results and the computational effort required. Contrary to common belief, we find that to adequately describe the protein, a single-bead model cannot be utilized without a significant effort to tabulate the simulation parameters. Similar to results for nanoparticle dynamics, our findings also indicate that the electric field and the electro-osmotic flow due to the applied membrane and electrolyte biases affect the capture and translocation of the biomolecule by either attracting or repelling it to or from the nanopore. Our computational model can also be applied to other types of proteins and separation conditions. PMID:27044064

  8. Outer membrane proteins of Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath).

    PubMed

    Fjellbirkeland, A; Kleivdal, H; Joergensen, C; Thestrup, H; Jensen, H B

    1997-08-01

    Membranes obtained from whole-cell lysates of Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath) were separated by Triton X-100 extraction. The resulting insoluble fraction was enriched in outer membranes as assessed by electron microscopy and by the content of beta-hydroxy palmitic acid and particulate methane monooxygenase. Major proteins with molecular masses of approximately 27, 40, 46, 59, and 66 kDa were detected by SDS-PAGE of the Triton-X-100-insoluble membranes. MopA, MopB, MopC, MopD, and MopE (Methylococcus outer membrane protein) are proposed to designate these proteins. Several of the Mop proteins exhibited heat-modifiable properties in SDS-PAGE and were influenced by the presence of 2-mercaptoethanol in the sample buffer. The 46- and 59-kDa bands migrated as a single high-molecular-mass 95-kDa oligomer under mild denaturing conditions. When reconstituted into black lipid membranes, this oligomer was shown to serve as a channel with an estimated single-channel conductance of 1.4 nS in 1 M KCl. PMID:9238104

  9. Major intrinsic proteins in biomimetic membranes.

    PubMed

    Nielsen, Claus Hélix

    2010-01-01

    Biological membranes define the structural and functional boundaries in living cells and their organelles. The integrity of the cell depends on its ability to separate inside from outside and yet at the same time allow massive transport of matter in and out the cell. Nature has elegantly met this challenge by developing membranes in the form of lipid bilayers in which specialized transport proteins are incorporated. This raises the question: is it possible to mimic biological membranes and create a membrane based sensor and/or separation device? In the development of a biomimetic sensor/separation technology, a unique class of membrane transport proteins is especially interesting-the major intrinsic proteins (MIPs). Generally, MIPs conduct water molecules and selected solutes in and out of the cell while preventing the passage of other solutes, a property critical for the conservation of the cells internal pH and salt concentration. Also known as water channels or aquaporins they are highly efficient membrane pore proteins some of which are capable of transporting water at very high rates up to 10(9) molecules per second. Some MIPs transport other small, uncharged solutes, such as glycerol and other permeants such as carbon dioxide, nitric oxide, ammonia, hydrogen peroxide and the metalloids antimonite, arsenite, silicic and boric acid depending on the effective restriction mechanism of the protein. The flux properties of MIPs thus lead to the question ifMIPs can be used in separation devices or as sensor devices based on, e.g., the selective permeation of metalloids. In principle a MIP based membrane sensor/separation device requires the supporting biomimetic matrix to be virtually impermeable to anything but water or the solute in question. In practice, however, a biomimetic support matrix will generally have finite permeabilities to both electrolytes and non-electrolytes. The feasibility of a biomimetic MIP device thus depends on the relative transport

  10. Novel protein phosphorylation site identification in spinach stroma membranes by titanium dioxide microcolumns and tandem mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Rinalducci, Sara; Larsen, Martin R; Mohammed, Shabaz; Zolla, Lello

    2006-04-01

    In this work, spinach stroma membrane, instead of thylakoid, has been investigated for the presence of phosphorylated proteins. We identified seven previously unknown phosphorylation sites by taking advantage of TiO(2) phosphopeptides enrichment coupled to mass spectrometric analysis. Upon illumination at 100 micromol m(-2) s(-1), two novel phosphopeptides belonging to the N-terminal region of Lhcb1 light-harvesting protein were detected: NVSSGS(p)PWYGPDR and T(p)VQSSSPWYGPDR. Moreover, three new threonine residues in CP43 (Thr-6, Thr-8, and Thr-346) and, for the first time, two amino acid residues of the N-terminus of Rieske Fe-S protein of the cytochrome b(6)f complex (Thr-2 and Ser-3) were revealed to be phosphorylated. Since Lhcb1 and CP43 have been reported as mobile proteins, it may be suggested that illumination derived phosphorylation, and consequently the addition of negatively charged groups to the protein, is a necessary condition to induce a significant protein structural change. PMID:16602705

  11. A Survey of Membrane Proteins in Human Serum

    PubMed Central

    Dung, Nguyen Tien; Van Chi, Phan

    2012-01-01

    Serum and membrane proteins are two of the most attractive targets for proteomic analysis. Previous membrane protein studies tend to focus on tissue sample, while membrane protein studies in serum are still limited. In this study, an analysis of membrane proteins in normal human serum was carried out. Nano-liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (NanoLC-ESI-MS/MS) and bioinformatics tools were used to identify membrane proteins. Two hundred and seventeen membrane proteins were detected in the human serum, of which 129 membrane proteins have at least one transmembrane domain (TMD). Further characterizations of identified membrane proteins including their subcellular distributions, molecular weights, post translational modifications, transmembrane domains and average of hydrophobicity, were also implemented. Our results showed the potential of membrane proteins in serum for diagnosis and treatment of diseases. PMID:25288886

  12. A nanoscale bio-inspired light-harvesting system developed from self-assembled alkyl-functionalized metallochlorin nano-aggregates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ocakoglu, Kasim; Joya, Khurram S.; Harputlu, Ersan; Tarnowska, Anna; Gryko, Daniel T.

    2014-07-01

    Self-assembled supramolecular organization of nano-structured biomimetic light-harvesting modules inside solid-state nano-templates can be exploited to develop excellent light-harvesting materials for artificial photosynthetic devices. We present here a hybrid light-harvesting system mimicking the chlorosomal structures of the natural photosynthetic system using synthetic zinc chlorin units (ZnChl-C6, ZnChl-C12 and ZnChl-C18) that are self-aggregated inside the anodic aluminum oxide (AAO) nano-channel membranes. AAO nano-templates were modified with a TiO2 matrix and functionalized with long hydrophobic chains to facilitate the formation of supramolecular Zn-chlorin aggregates. The transparent Zn-chlorin nano-aggregates inside the alkyl-TiO2 modified AAO nano-channels have a diameter of ~120 nm in a 60 μm length channel. UV-Vis studies and fluorescence emission spectra further confirm the formation of the supramolecular ZnChl aggregates from monomer molecules inside the alkyl-functionalized nano-channels. Our results prove that the novel and unique method can be used to produce efficient and stable light-harvesting assemblies for effective solar energy capture through transparent and stable nano-channel ceramic materials modified with bio-mimetic molecular self-assembled nano-aggregates.Self-assembled supramolecular organization of nano-structured biomimetic light-harvesting modules inside solid-state nano-templates can be exploited to develop excellent light-harvesting materials for artificial photosynthetic devices. We present here a hybrid light-harvesting system mimicking the chlorosomal structures of the natural photosynthetic system using synthetic zinc chlorin units (ZnChl-C6, ZnChl-C12 and ZnChl-C18) that are self-aggregated inside the anodic aluminum oxide (AAO) nano-channel membranes. AAO nano-templates were modified with a TiO2 matrix and functionalized with long hydrophobic chains to facilitate the formation of supramolecular Zn-chlorin aggregates. The

  13. Nature of Light-Harvesting-System Excited States Prepared by Thermal Light

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Botero, Juan David; Brumer, Paul; Pachon, Leonardo; Grupo de Fisica Atomica y Molecular Team; Chemical Physics Theory Group Team

    2015-03-01

    The nature of excited states produced by incoherent natural thermal light is analyzed in the context of light-harvesting system. In the absence of proteomic environments or solvents, it is shown that natural thermal light generates extremely long-lasting coherent dynamics in photosynthetic light-harvesting systems provided by the super-Ohmic character of the radiation, the lack of pure dephasing dynamics and the small energy gap between donors and acceptors. Although this unexpectected result has the potential of changing the entire direction of the discussion on the nature of excitonic states prepared by sunlight, when the environment is considered, the extremely long-lasting coherences induced by incoherent light are removed and stationary coherences are established in the photosynthetic light-harvesting system.

  14. Light-Harvesting Systems Based on Organic Nanocrystals To Mimic Chlorosomes.

    PubMed

    Chen, Peng-Zhong; Weng, Yu-Xiang; Niu, Li-Ya; Chen, Yu-Zhe; Wu, Li-Zhu; Tung, Chen-Ho; Yang, Qing-Zheng

    2016-02-18

    We report the first highly efficient artificial light-harvesting systems based on nanocrystals of difluoroboron chromophores to mimic the chlorosomes, one of the most efficient light-harvesting systems found in green photosynthetic bacteria. Uniform nanocrystals with controlled donor/acceptor ratios were prepared by simple coassembly of the donors and acceptors in water. The light-harvesting system funneled the excitation energy collected by a thousand donor chromophores to a single acceptor. The well-defined spatial organization of individual chromophores in the nanocrystals enabled an energy transfer efficiency of 95 %, even at a donor/acceptor ratio as high as 1000:1, and a significant fluorescence of the acceptor was observed up to donor/acceptor ratios of 200 000:1. PMID:26799735

  15. Extension of Light-Harvesting Ability of Photosynthetic Light-Harvesting Complex 2 (LH2) through Ultrafast Energy Transfer from Covalently Attached Artificial Chromophores.

    PubMed

    Yoneda, Yusuke; Noji, Tomoyasu; Katayama, Tetsuro; Mizutani, Naoto; Komori, Daisuke; Nango, Mamoru; Miyasaka, Hiroshi; Itoh, Shigeru; Nagasawa, Yutaka; Dewa, Takehisa

    2015-10-14

    Introducing appropriate artificial components into natural biological systems could enrich the original functionality. To expand the available wavelength range of photosynthetic bacterial light-harvesting complex 2 (LH2 from Rhodopseudomonas acidophila 10050), artificial fluorescent dye (Alexa Fluor 647: A647) was covalently attached to N- and C-terminal Lys residues in LH2 α-polypeptides with a molar ratio of A647/LH2 ≃ 9/1. Fluorescence and transient absorption spectroscopies revealed that intracomplex energy transfer from A647 to intrinsic chromophores of LH2 (B850) occurs in a multiexponential manner, with time constants varying from 440 fs to 23 ps through direct and B800-mediated indirect pathways. Kinetic analyses suggested that B800 chromophores mediate faster energy transfer, and the mechanism was interpretable in terms of Förster theory. This study demonstrates that a simple attachment of external chromophores with a flexible linkage can enhance the light harvesting activity of LH2 without affecting inherent functions of energy transfer, and can achieve energy transfer in the subpicosecond range. Addition of external chromophores, thus, represents a useful methodology for construction of advanced hybrid light-harvesting systems that afford solar energy in the broad spectrum. PMID:26403467

  16. Measuring quantum effects in photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes with multipartite entanglement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smyth, Cathal

    This thesis is a compilation of studies on delocalization measures, entanglement, and the role of quantum coherence in electronic energy transfer (EET) in light-harvesting complexes. The first two chapters after the introduction provide foundational knowledge of quantum information and light-harvesting, respectively. Chapter 2 introduces concepts from quantum information such as purity, bipartite entanglement and criteria for its measurement. The peripheral light-harvesting complex LH2, isolated from the anoxygenic purple bacterium Rhodopseudomonas acidophila, is employed as model system of interest. This light-harvesting complex, along with a description of the process of light-harvesting, the presence of quantum coherence, and the different models used to simulate EET, are described in chapter 3. In combination these two chapters lay the foundation for chapter 4, a critical assessment of the current measures of delocalization employed in EET studies, their relationship, and overall effectiveness. The conclusion is that entanglement based measures are most effective at measuring quantum effects, and that they can be related to more conventional delocalization measures such as the inverse participation ratio (IPR) by taking into account the entropy of the system under study. All the measures within this chapter are known as bipartite measures, and only measure the strength of correlation between two sites. The fifth chapter presents the core of this thesis. Following a brief introduction to the concept of multipartite entanglement, the development of multipartite delocalization measures that give high-resolution information on quantum coherence in light-harvesting complexes is detailed. In contrast to other measures, these analytical measures can detect many body correlations in large systems undergoing decoherence. We determine that, much like the bipartite entanglement based measures of chapter 4, these measures are also a function of system entropy, and have a

  17. Towards an ab initio description of the optical spectra of light-harvesting antennae: application to the CP29 complex of photosystem II.

    PubMed

    Jurinovich, Sandro; Viani, Lucas; Prandi, Ingrid G; Renger, Thomas; Mennucci, Benedetta

    2015-06-14

    Light-harvesting pigment-protein complexes (PPC) represent the fundamental units through which the photosynthetic organisms absorb sunlight and funnel the energy to the reaction centre for carrying out the primary energy conversion reactions of photosynthesis. Here we apply a multiscale computational strategy to a specific PPC present in the photosystem II of plants and algae (CP29) to investigate in what detail should the environment effects due to protein and membrane/solvent be included for an accurate description of optical spectra. We find that a refinement of the crystal structure is needed before any meaningful quantum chemical calculations of pigment transition energies can be performed. For this purpose we apply classical molecular dynamics simulations of the PPC within its natural environment and we perform ab initio computations of the exciton Hamiltonian of the complex, including the environment either implicitly by the polarizable continuum model (PCM) or explicitly using the polarizable QM/MM methodology (MMPol). However, PCM essentially leads to an unspecific redshift of all transition energies, and MMPol is able to reveal site-specific changes in the optical properties of the pigments. Based on the latter and the excitonic couplings obtained within a polarizable QM/MM methodology, optical spectra are calculated, which are in good qualitative agreement with experimental data. A weakness of the approach is however found in the overestimation of the fluctuations of the excitonic parameters of the pigments along the MD trajectory. An explanation for such a finding in terms of the limits of the force fields commonly used for protein cofactors is presented and discussed. PMID:25872495

  18. Membrane Protein Solubilization and Composition of Protein Detergent Complexes.

    PubMed

    Duquesne, Katia; Prima, Valérie; Sturgis, James N

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins are typically expressed in heterologous systems with a view to in vitro characterization. A critical step in the preparation of membrane proteins after expression in any system is the solubilization of the protein in aqueous solution, typically using detergents and lipids, to obtain the protein in a form suitable for purification, structural or functional analysis. This process is particularly difficult as the objective is to prepare the protein in an unnatural environment, a protein detergent complex, separating it from its natural lipid partners while causing the minimum destabilization or modification of the structure. Although the process is difficult, and relatively hard to master, an increasing number of membrane proteins have been successfully isolated after expression in a wide variety of systems. In this chapter we give a general protocol for preparing protein detergent complexes that is aimed at guiding the reader through the different critical steps. In the second part of the chapter we illustrate how to analyze the composition of protein detergent complexes; this analysis is important as it has been found that compositional variation often causes irreproducible results. PMID:27485340

  19. Self diffusion of interacting membrane proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Abney, J R; Scalettar, B A; Owicki, J C

    1989-01-01

    A two-dimensional version of the generalized Smoluchowski equation is used to analyze the time (or distance) dependent self diffusion of interacting membrane proteins in concentrated membrane systems. This equation provides a well established starting point for descriptions of the diffusion of particles that interact through both direct and hydrodynamic forces; in this initial work only the effects of direct interactions are explicitly considered. Data describing diffusion in the presence of hard-core repulsions, soft repulsions, and soft repulsions with weak attractions are presented. The effect that interactions have on the self-diffusion coefficient of a real protein molecule from mouse liver gap junctions is also calculated. The results indicate that self diffusion is always inhibited by direct interactions; this observation is interpreted in terms of the caging that will exist at finite protein concentration. It is also noted that, over small distance scales, the diffusion coefficient is determined entirely by the very strong Brownian forces; therefore, as a function of displacement the self-diffusion coefficient decays (rapidly) from its value at infinite dilution to its steady-state interaction-averaged value. The steady-state self-diffusion coefficient describes motion over distance scales that range from approximately 10 nm to cellular dimensions and is the quantity measured in fluorescence recovery after photobleaching experiments. The short-ranged behavior of the diffusion coefficient is important on the interparticle-distance scale and may therefore influence the rate at which nearest-neighbor collisional processes take place. The hard-disk theoretical results presented here are in excellent agreement with lattice Monte-Carlo results obtained by other workers. The concentration dependence of experimentally measured diffusion coefficients of antibody-hapten complexes bound to the membrane surface is consistent with that predicted by the theory. The

  20. Unified analysis of ensemble and single-complex optical spectral data from light-harvesting complex-2 chromoproteins for gaining deeper insight into bacterial photosynthesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pajusalu, Mihkel; Kunz, Ralf; Rätsep, Margus; Timpmann, Kõu; Köhler, Jürgen; Freiberg, Arvi

    2015-11-01

    Bacterial light-harvesting pigment-protein complexes are very efficient at converting photons into excitons and transferring them to reaction centers, where the energy is stored in a chemical form. Optical properties of the complexes are known to change significantly in time and also vary from one complex to another; therefore, a detailed understanding of the variations on the level of single complexes and how they accumulate into effects that can be seen on the macroscopic scale is required. While experimental and theoretical methods exist to study the spectral properties of light-harvesting complexes on both individual complex and bulk ensemble levels, they have been developed largely independently of each other. To fill this gap, we simultaneously analyze experimental low-temperature single-complex and bulk ensemble optical spectra of the light-harvesting complex-2 (LH2) chromoproteins from the photosynthetic bacterium Rhodopseudomonas acidophila in order to find a unique theoretical model consistent with both experimental situations. The model, which satisfies most of the observations, combines strong exciton-phonon coupling with significant disorder, characteristic of the proteins. We establish a detailed disorder model that, in addition to containing a C2-symmetrical modulation of the site energies, distinguishes between static intercomplex and slow conformational intracomplex disorders. The model evaluations also verify that, despite best efforts, the single-LH2-complex measurements performed so far may be biased toward complexes with higher Huang-Rhys factors.

  1. The electron conduction of photosynthetic protein complexes embedded in a membrane.

    PubMed

    Stamouli, A; Frenken, J W M; Oosterkamp, T H; Cogdell, R J; Aartsma, T J

    2004-02-27

    The conductivity of two photosynthetic protein-pigment complexes, a light harvesting 2 complex and a reaction center, was measured with an atomic force microscope capable of performing electrical measurements. Current-voltage measurements were performed on complexes embedded in their natural environment. Embedding the complexes in lipid bilayers made it possible to discuss the different conduction behaviors of the two complexes in light of their atomic structure. PMID:14988007

  2. MemProtMD: Automated Insertion of Membrane Protein Structures into Explicit Lipid Membranes

    PubMed Central

    Stansfeld, Phillip J.; Goose, Joseph E.; Caffrey, Martin; Carpenter, Elisabeth P.; Parker, Joanne L.; Newstead, Simon; Sansom, Mark S.P.

    2015-01-01

    Summary There has been exponential growth in the number of membrane protein structures determined. Nevertheless, these structures are usually resolved in the absence of their lipid environment. Coarse-grained molecular dynamics (CGMD) simulations enable insertion of membrane proteins into explicit models of lipid bilayers. We have automated the CGMD methodology, enabling membrane protein structures to be identified upon their release into the PDB and embedded into a membrane. The simulations are analyzed for protein-lipid interactions, identifying lipid binding sites, and revealing local bilayer deformations plus molecular access pathways within the membrane. The coarse-grained models of membrane protein/bilayer complexes are transformed to atomistic resolution for further analysis and simulation. Using this automated simulation pipeline, we have analyzed a number of recently determined membrane protein structures to predict their locations within a membrane, their lipid/protein interactions, and the functional implications of an enhanced understanding of the local membrane environment of each protein. PMID:26073602

  3. Self-assembled photosynthesis-inspired light harvesting material and solar cells containing the same

    DOEpatents

    Lindsey, Jonathan S.; Chinnasamy, Muthiah; Fan, Dazhong

    2009-12-15

    A solar cell is described that comprises: (a) a semiconductor charge separation material; (b) at least one electrode connected to the charge separation material; and (c) a light-harvesting film on the charge separation material, the light-harvesting film comprising non-covalently coupled, self-assembled units of porphyrinic macrocycles. The porphyrinic macrocycles preferably comprise: (i) an intramolecularly coordinated metal; (ii) a first coordinating substituent; and (iii) a second coordinating substituent opposite the first coordinating substituent. The porphyrinic macrocycles can be assembled by repeating intermolecular coordination complexes of the metal, the first coordinating substituent and the second coordinating substituent.

  4. Engineering Lipid Bilayer Membranes for Protein Studies

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Muhammad Shuja; Dosoky, Noura Sayed; Williams, John Dalton

    2013-01-01

    Lipid membranes regulate the flow of nutrients and communication signaling between cells and protect the sub-cellular structures. Recent attempts to fabricate artificial systems using nanostructures that mimic the physiological properties of natural lipid bilayer membranes (LBM) fused with transmembrane proteins have helped demonstrate the importance of temperature, pH, ionic strength, adsorption behavior, conformational reorientation and surface density in cellular membranes which all affect the incorporation of proteins on solid surfaces. Much of this work is performed on artificial templates made of polymer sponges or porous materials based on alumina, mica, and porous silicon (PSi) surfaces. For example, porous silicon materials have high biocompatibility, biodegradability, and photoluminescence, which allow them to be used both as a support structure for lipid bilayers or a template to measure the electrochemical functionality of living cells grown over the surface as in vivo. The variety of these media, coupled with the complex physiological conditions present in living systems, warrant a summary and prospectus detailing which artificial systems provide the most promise for different biological conditions. This study summarizes the use of electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) data on artificial biological membranes that are closely matched with previously published biological systems using both black lipid membrane and patch clamp techniques. PMID:24185908

  5. When physics takes over: BAR proteins and membrane curvature

    PubMed Central

    Simunovic, Mijo; Voth, Gregory A.; Callan-Jones, Andrew; Bassereau, Patricia

    2016-01-01

    Cell membranes become highly curved during membrane trafficking, cytokinesis, infection, immune response or cell motion. Bin/amphiphysin/Rvs (BAR) domain proteins with their intrinsically curved and anisotropic shape are involved in many of these processes, but with a large spectrum of modes of action. In vitro experiments and multiscale computer simulations have contributed in identifying a minimal set of physical parameters, namely protein density on the membrane, membrane tension, and membrane shape, that control how bound BAR domain proteins behave on the membrane. In this review, we summarize the multifaceted coupling of BAR proteins to membrane mechanics and propose a simple phase diagram that recapitulates the effects of these parameters. PMID:26519988

  6. SNARE proteins and ‘membrane rafts’

    PubMed Central

    Lang, Thorsten

    2007-01-01

    The original ‘lipid raft’ hypothesis proposed that lipid-platforms/rafts form in the exoplasmic plasmalemmal leaflet by tight clustering of sphingolipids and cholesterol. Their physical state, presumably similar to liquid-ordered phases in model membranes, would confer detergent resistance to rafts and enriched proteins therein. Based on this concept, detergent resistant membranes (DRMs) from solubilized cells were considered to reflect pre-existing ‘lipid rafts’ in live cells. To date, more than 200 proteins were found in DRMs including also members of the SNARE superfamily, which are small membrane proteins involved in intracellular fusion steps. Their raft association indicates that they are not uniformly distributed, and, indeed, microscopic studies revealed that SNAREs concentrate in submicrometre-sized, cholesterol-dependent clusters at which vesicles fuse. However, the idea that SNARE clusters are ‘lipid rafts’ was challenged, as they do not colocalize with raft markers, and SNAREs are excluded from liquid-ordered phases in model membranes. Independent from this disagreement, in recent years the solubilization criterion has been criticized for several reasons, calling for a more exact definition of rafts. At a recent consensus on a revised raft model, the term ‘lipid rafts’ was replaced by ‘membrane rafts’ that were defined as ‘small (10–200 nm), heterogeneous, highly dynamic, sterol- and sphingolipid-enriched domains that compartmentalize cellular processes’. As a result, after dismissing the terms ‘detergent resistant’ and ‘liquid-ordered’, it now appears that SNARE clusters are bona fide ‘membrane rafts’. PMID:17478530

  7. Membrane protein structure determination by electron crystallography

    PubMed Central

    Ubarretxena-Belandia, Iban; Stokes, David L.

    2012-01-01

    During the past year, electron crystallography of membrane proteins has provided structural insights into the mechanism of several different transporters and into their interactions with lipid molecules within the bilayer. From a technical perspective there have been important advances in high-throughput screening of crystallization trials and in automated imaging of membrane crystals with the electron microscope. There have also been key developments in software, and in molecular replacement and phase extension methods designed to facilitate the process of structure determination. PMID:22572457

  8. Protein permeation through an electrically tunable membrane

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jou, Ining A.; Melnikov, Dmitriy V.; Gracheva, Maria E.

    2016-05-01

    Protein filtration is important in many fields of science and technology such as medicine, biology, chemistry, and engineering. Recently, protein separation and filtering with nanoporous membranes has attracted interest due to the possibility of fast separation and high throughput volume. This, however, requires understanding of the protein’s dynamics inside and in the vicinity of the nanopore. In this work, we utilize a Brownian dynamics approach to study the motion of the model protein insulin in the membrane–electrolyte electrostatic potential. We compare the results of the atomic model of the protein with the results of a coarse-grained and a single-bead model, and find that the coarse-grained representation of protein strikes the best balance between the accuracy of the results and the computational effort required. Contrary to common belief, we find that to adequately describe the protein, a single-bead model cannot be utilized without a significant effort to tabulate the simulation parameters. Similar to results for nanoparticle dynamics, our findings also indicate that the electric field and the electro-osmotic flow due to the applied membrane and electrolyte biases affect the capture and translocation of the biomolecule by either attracting or repelling it to or from the nanopore. Our computational model can also be applied to other types of proteins and separation conditions.

  9. Identification of extracellularly phosphorylated membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Burghoff, Sandra; Willberg, Wibke; Schrader, Jürgen

    2015-10-01

    Ecto-protein kinases phosphorylate extracellular membrane proteins and exhibit similarities to casein kinases and protein kinases A and C. However, the identification of their protein substrates still remains a challenge because a clear separation from intracellular phosphoproteins is difficult. Here, we describe a straightforward method for the identification of extracellularly phosphorylated membrane proteins in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) and K562 cells which used the protease bromelain to selectively remove ectoproteins from intact cells and combined this with the subsequent analysis using IMAC and LC-MS/MS. A "false-positive" strategy in which cells without protease treatment served as controls was applied. Using this approach we identified novel phosphorylation sites on five ectophosphoproteins (NOTCH1, otopetrin 1, regulator of G-protein signalling 13 (RGS13), protein tyrosine phosphatase receptor type D isoform 3 (PTPRD), usherin isoform B (USH2A)). Use of bromelain appears to be a reliable technique for the further identification of phosphorylated surface-exposed peptides when extracellular adenosine-5'-triphosphate is elevated during purinergic signalling. PMID:26152529

  10. Golgi protein FAPP2 tubulates membranes

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Xinwang; Coskun, Ünal; Rössle, Manfred; Buschhorn, Sabine B.; Grzybek, Michal; Dafforn, Timothy R.; Lenoir, Marc; Overduin, Michael; Simons, Kai

    2009-01-01

    The Golgi-associated four-phosphate adaptor protein 2 (FAPP2) has been shown to possess transfer activity for glucosylceramide both in vitro and in cells. We have previously shown that FAPP2 is involved in apical transport from the Golgi complex in epithelial MDCK cells. In this paper we assign an unknown activity for the protein as well as providing structural insight into protein assembly and a low-resolution envelope structure. By applying analytical ultracentrifugation and small-angle x-ray scattering, we show that FAPP2 is a dimeric protein in solution, having a curved shape 30 nm in length. The purified FAPP2 protein has the capability to form tubules from membrane sheets in vitro. This activity is dependent on the phosphoinositide-binding activity of the PH domain of FAPP2. These data suggest that FAPP2 functions directly in the formation of apical carriers in the trans-Golgi network. PMID:19940249

  11. Exploiting Microbeams for Membrane Protein Structure Determination.

    PubMed

    Warren, Anna J; Axford, Danny; Paterson, Neil G; Owen, Robin L

    2016-01-01

    A reproducible, and sample independent means of predictably obtaining large, well-ordered crystals has proven elusive in macromolecular crystallography. In the structure determination pipeline, crystallisation often proves to be a rate-limiting step, and the process of obtaining even small or badly ordered crystals can prove time-consuming and laborious. This is particularly true in the field of membrane protein crystallography and this is reflected in the limited number of unique membrane protein structures deposited in the protein data bank (less than 650 by June 2016 - http://blanco.biomol.uci.edu/mpstruc ). Over recent years the requirement for, and time and cost associated with obtaining, large crystals has been partially alleviated through the development of beamline instrumentation allowing data collection, and structure solution, from ever-smaller crystals. Advances in several areas have led to a step change in what might be considered achievable during a synchrotron trip over the last decade. This chapter will briefly review the current status of the field, the tools available to ease data collection and processing, and give some examples of exploitation of these for membrane protein microfocus macromolecular crystallography. PMID:27553238

  12. Efficient light-harvesting using non-carbonyl carotenoids: Energy transfer dynamics in the VCP complex from Nannochloropsis oceanica.

    PubMed

    Keşan, Gürkan; Litvín, Radek; Bína, David; Durchan, Milan; Šlouf, Václav; Polívka, Tomáš

    2016-04-01

    Violaxanthin-chlorophyll a protein (VCP) from Nannochloropsis oceanica is a Chl a-only member of the LHC family of light-harvesting proteins. VCP binds carotenoids violaxanthin (Vio), vaucheriaxanthin (Vau), and vaucheriaxanthin-ester (Vau-ester). Here we report on energy transfer pathways in the VCP complex. The overall carotenoid-to-Chla energy transfer has efficiency over 90%. Based on their energy transfer properties, the carotenoids in VCP can be divided into two groups; blue carotenoids with the lowest energy absorption band around 480nm and red carotenoids with absorption extended up to 530nm. Both carotenoid groups transfer energy efficiently from their S2 states, reaching efficiencies of ~70% (blue) and ~60% (red). The S1 pathway, however, is efficient only for the red carotenoid pool for which two S1 routes characterized by 0.33 and 2.4ps time constants were identified. For the blue carotenoids the S1-mediated pathway is represented only by a minor route likely involving a hot S1 state. The relaxed S1 state of blue carotenoids decays to the ground state within 21ps. Presence of a fraction of non-transferring red carotenoids with the S1 lifetime of 13ps indicates some specific carotenoid-protein interaction that must shorten the intrinsic S1 lifetime of Vio and/or Vau whose S1 lifetimes in methanol are 26 and 29ps, respectively. The VCP complex from N. oceanica is the first example of a light-harvesting complex binding only non-carbonyl carotenoids with carotenoid-to-chlorophyll energy transfer efficiency over 90%. PMID:26744091

  13. Outer membrane proteins of pathogenic spirochetes

    PubMed Central

    Cullen, Paul A.; Haake, David A.; Adler, Ben

    2009-01-01

    Pathogenic spirochetes are the causative agents of several important diseases including syphilis, Lyme disease, leptospirosis, swine dysentery, periodontal disease and some forms of relapsing fever. Spirochetal bacteria possess two membranes and the proteins present in the outer membrane are at the site of interaction with host tissue and the immune system. This review describes the current knowledge in the field of spirochetal outer membrane protein (OMP) biology. What is known concerning biogenesis and structure of OMPs, with particular regard to the atypical signal peptide cleavage sites observed amongst the spirochetes, is discussed. We examine the functions that have been determined for several spirochetal OMPs including those that have been demonstrated to function as adhesins, porins or to have roles in complement resistance. A detailed description of the role of spirochetal OMPs in immunity, including those that stimulate protective immunity or that are involved in antigenic variation, is given. A final section is included which covers experimental considerations in spirochetal outer membrane biology. This section covers contentious issues concerning cellular localization of putative OMPs, including determination of surface exposure. A more detailed knowledge of spirochetal OMP biology will hopefully lead to the design of new vaccines and a better understanding of spirochetal pathogenesis. PMID:15449605

  14. The variability of light-harvesting complexes in aerobic anoxygenic phototrophs.

    PubMed

    Selyanin, Vadim; Hauruseu, Dzmitry; Koblížek, Michal

    2016-04-01

    Light-harvesting capacity was investigated in six species of aerobic anoxygenic phototrophic (AAP) bacteria using absorption spectroscopy, fluorescence emission spectroscopy, and pigment analyses. Aerobically grown AAP cells contained approx. 140-1800 photosynthetic reaction centers per cell, an order of magnitude less than purple non-sulfur bacteria grown semiaerobically. Three of the studied AAP species did not contain outer light-harvesting complexes, and the size of their reaction center core complexes (RC-LH1 core complexes) varied between 29 and 36 bacteriochlorophyll molecules. In AAP species containing accessory antennae, the size was frequently reduced, providing between 5 and 60 additional bacteriochlorophyll molecules. In Roseobacter litoralis, it was found that cells grown at a higher light intensity contained more reaction centers per cell, while the size of the light-harvesting complexes was reduced. The presented results document that AAP species have both the reduced number and size of light-harvesting complexes which is consistent with the auxiliary role of phototrophy in this bacterial group. PMID:26482589

  15. Studying the Effect of Light Quality on the Size of the Photosystem II Light Harvesting Complex

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Muhoz, Romualdo; Quiles, Maria J.

    2003-01-01

    In this article the effect of light quality on the size of the photosystem II (PSII) light harvesting complex (LHCII) is studied by measuring the chlorophyll fluorescence emitted by leaf sections of oat ("Avena sativa," var. Prevision) plants previously treated with either white light or with light filtered through blue, green, red or farred…

  16. Serial Millisecond Crystallography of Membrane Proteins.

    PubMed

    Jaeger, Kathrin; Dworkowski, Florian; Nogly, Przemyslaw; Milne, Christopher; Wang, Meitian; Standfuss, Joerg

    2016-01-01

    Serial femtosecond crystallography (SFX) at X-ray free-electron lasers (XFELs) is a powerful method to determine high-resolution structures of pharmaceutically relevant membrane proteins. Recently, the technology has been adapted to carry out serial millisecond crystallography (SMX) at synchrotron sources, where beamtime is more abundant. In an injector-based approach, crystals grown in lipidic cubic phase (LCP) or embedded in viscous medium are delivered directly into the unattenuated beam of a microfocus beamline. Pilot experiments show the application of microjet-based SMX for solving the structure of a membrane protein and compatibility of the method with de novo phasing. Planned synchrotron upgrades, faster detectors and software developments will go hand-in-hand with developments at free-electron lasers to provide a powerful methodology for solving structures from microcrystals at room temperature, ligand screening or crystal optimization for time-resolved studies with minimal or no radiation damage. PMID:27553240

  17. Binding contribution between synaptic vesicle membrane and plasma membrane proteins in neurons: an AFM study.

    PubMed

    Sritharan, K C; Quinn, A S; Taatjes, D J; Jena, B P

    1998-01-01

    The final step in the exocytotic process is the docking and fusion of membrane-bound secretory vesicles at the cell plasma membrane. This docking and fusion is brought about by several participating vesicle membrane, plasma membrane and soluble cytosolic proteins. A clear understanding of the interactions between these participating proteins giving rise to vesicle docking and fusion is essential. In this study, the binding force profiles between synaptic vesicle membrane and plasma membrane proteins have been examined for the first time using the atomic force microscope. Binding force contributions of a synaptic vesicle membrane protein VAMP1, and the plasma membrane proteins SNAP-25 and syntaxin, are also implicated from these studies. Our study suggests that these three proteins are the major, if not the only contributors to the interactive binding force that exist between the two membranes. PMID:10452835

  18. Lipidic phase membrane protein serial femtosecond crystallography

    PubMed Central

    Johansson, Linda C; Arnlund, David; White, Thomas A; Katona, Gergely; DePonte, Daniel P; Weierstall, Uwe; Doak, R Bruce; Shoeman, Robert L; Lomb, Lukas; Malmerberg, Erik; Davidsson, Jan; Nass, Karol; Liang, Mengning; Andreasson, Jakob; Aquila, Andrew; Bajt, Sasa; Barthelmess, Miriam; Barty, Anton; Bogan, Michael J; Bostedt, Christoph; Bozek, John D; Caleman, Carl; Coffee, Ryan; Coppola, Nicola; Ekeberg, Tomas; Epp, Sascha W; Erk, Benjamin; Fleckenstein, Holger; Foucar, Lutz; Graafsma, Heinz; Gumprecht, Lars; Hajdu, Janos; Hampton, Christina Y; Hartmann, Robert; Hartmann, Andreas; Hauser, Günter; Hirsemann, Helmut; Holl, Peter; Hunter, Mark S; Kassemeyer, Stephan; Kimmel, Nils; Kirian, Richard A; Maia, Filipe R N C; Marchesini, Stefano; Martin, Andrew V; Reich, Christian; Rolles, Daniel; Rudek, Benedikt; Rudenko, Artem; Schlichting, Ilme; Schulz, Joachim; Seibert, M Marvin; Sierra, Raymond G; Soltau, Heike; Starodub, Dmitri; Stellato, Francesco; Stern, Stephan; Strüder, Lothar; Timneanu, Nicusor; Ullrich, Joachim; Wahlgren, Weixiao Y; Wang, Xiaoyu; Weidenspointner, Georg; Wunderer, Cornelia; Fromme, Petra; Chapman, Henry N; Spence, John C H; Neutze, Richard

    2012-01-01

    X-ray free electron laser (X-feL)-based serial femtosecond crystallography is an emerging method with potential to rapidly advance the challenging field of membrane protein structural biology. here we recorded interpretable diffraction data from micrometer-sized lipidic sponge phase crystals of the Blastochloris viridis photosynthetic reaction center delivered into an X-feL beam using a sponge phase micro-jet. PMID:22286383

  19. Vibrational dynamics of plant light-harvesting complex LHC II investigated by quasi- and inelastic neutron scattering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Golub, Maksym; Irrgang, Klaus-Dieter; Rusevich, Leonid; Pieper, Jörg

    2015-01-01

    Vibrational dynamics of the light-harvesting complex II (LHC II) from spinach was investigated by quasi- and inelastic neutron scattering (QENS and INS) at three different temperatures of 80, 160, and 285 K. QENS/INS spectra of solubilised LHC II and of the corresponding buffer solution were obtained separately and exhibit characteristic inelastic features. After subtraction of the buffer contribution, the INS spectrum of LHC II reveals a distinct Boson peak at ˜ 2.5 meV at 80 K that shifts towards lower energies if the temperature is increased to 285 K. This effect is interpreted in terms of a "softening" of the protein matrix along with the dynamical transition at ˜ 240 K. Our findings indicate that INS is a valuable method to obtain the density of vibrational states not only at cryogenic, but also at physiological temperatures.

  20. Theoretical analysis of protein organization in lipid membranes.

    PubMed

    Gil, T; Ipsen, J H; Mouritsen, O G; Sabra, M C; Sperotto, M M; Zuckermann, M J

    1998-11-10

    The fundamental physical principles of the lateral organization of trans-membrane proteins and peptides as well as peripheral membrane proteins and enzymes are considered from the point of view of the lipid-bilayer membrane, its structure, dynamics, and cooperative phenomena. Based on a variety of theoretical considerations and model calculations, the nature of lipid-protein interactions is considered both for a single protein and an assembly of proteins that can lead to aggregation and protein crystallization in the plane of the membrane. Phenomena discussed include lipid sorting and selectivity at protein surfaces, protein-lipid phase equilibria, lipid-mediated protein-protein interactions, wetting and capillary condensation as means of protein organization, mechanisms of two-dimensional protein crystallization, as well as non-equilibrium organization of active proteins in membranes. The theoretical findings are compared with a variety of experimental data. PMID:9804966

  1. Iron-Induced Changes in Light Harvesting and Photochemical Energy Conversion Processes in Eukaryotic Marine Algae 1

    PubMed Central

    Greene, Richard M.; Geider, Richard J.; Kolber, Zbigniew; Falkowski, Paul G.

    1992-01-01

    The role of iron in regulating light harvesting and photochemical energy conversion processes was examined in the marine unicellular chlorophyte Dunaliella tertiolecta and the marine diatom Phaeodactylum tricornutum. In both species, iron limitation led to a reduction in cellular chlorophyll concentrations, but an increase in the in vivo, chlorophyll-specific, optical absorption cross-sections. Moreover, the absorption cross-section of photosystem II, a measure of the photon target area of the traps, was higher in iron-limited cells and decreased rapidly following iron addition. Iron-limited cells exhibited reduced variable/maximum fluorescence ratios and a reduced fluorescence per unit absorption at all wave-lengths between 400 and 575 nm. Following iron addition, variable/maximum fluorescence ratios increased rapidly, reaching 90% of the maximum within 18 to 25 h. Thus, although more light was absorbed per unit of chlorophyll, iron limitation reduced the transfer efficiency of excitation energy in photosystem II. The half-time for the oxidation of primary electron acceptor of photosystem II, calculated from the kinetics of decay of variable maximum fluorescence, increased 2-fold under iron limitation. Quantitative analysis of western blots revealed that cytochrome f and subunit IV (the plastoquinone-docking protein) of the cytochrome b6/f complex were also significantly reduced by lack of iron; recovery from iron limitation was completely inhibited by either cycloheximide or chloramphenicol. The recovery of maximum photosynthetic energy conversion efficiency occurs in three stages: (a) a rapid (3-5 h) increase in electron transfer rates on the acceptor side of photosystem II correlated with de novo synthesis of the cytochrome b6/f complex; (b) an increase (10-15 h) in the quantum efficiency correlated with an increase in D1 accumulation; and (c) a slow (>18 h) increase in chlorophyll levels accompanied by an increase in the efficiency of energy transfer from the

  2. Membrane tension controls the assembly of curvature-generating proteins

    PubMed Central

    Simunovic, Mijo; Voth, Gregory A.

    2015-01-01

    Proteins containing a Bin/Amphiphysin/Rvs (BAR) domain regulate membrane curvature in the cell. Recent simulations have revealed that BAR proteins assemble into linear aggregates, strongly affecting membrane curvature and its in-plane stress profile. Here, we explore the opposite question: do mechanical properties of the membrane impact protein association? By using coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations, we show that increased surface tension significantly impacts the dynamics of protein assembly. While tensionless membranes promote a rapid formation of long-living linear aggregates of N-BAR proteins, increase in tension alters the geometry of protein association. At high tension, protein interactions are strongly inhibited. Increasing surface density of proteins leads to a wider range of protein association geometries, promoting the formation of meshes, which can be broken apart with membrane tension. Our work indicates that surface tension may play a key role in recruiting proteins to membrane-remodelling sites in the cell. PMID:26008710

  3. Crystallizing Membrane Proteins Using Lipidic Mesophases

    PubMed Central

    Caffrey, Martin; Cherezov, Vadim

    2009-01-01

    A detailed protocol for crystallizing membrane proteins that makes use of lipidic mesophases is described. This has variously been referred to as the lipid cubic phase or in meso method. The method has been shown to be quite general in that it has been used to solve X-ray crystallographic structures of prokaryotic and eukaryotic proteins, proteins that are monomeric, homo- and hetero-multimeric, chromophore-containing and chromophore-free, and α-helical and β-barrel proteins. Its most recent successes are the human engineered β2-adrenergic and adenosine A2A G protein-coupled receptors. Protocols are provided for preparing and characterizing the lipidic mesophase, for reconstituting the protein into the monoolein-based mesophase, for functional assay of the protein in the mesophase, and for setting up crystallizations in manual mode. Methods for harvesting micro-crystals are also described. The time required to prepare the protein-loaded mesophase and to set up a crystallization plate manually is about one hour. PMID:19390528

  4. Thermal Quantum Correlations in Photosynthetic Light-Harvesting Complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mahdian, M.; Kouhestani, H.

    2015-08-01

    Photosynthesis is one of the ancient biological processes, playing crucial role converting solar energy to cellular usable currency. Environmental factors and external perturbations has forced nature to choose systems with the highest efficiency and performance. Recent theoretical and experimental studies have proved the presence of quantum properties in biological systems. Energy transfer systems like Fenna-Matthews-Olson (FMO) complex shows quantum entanglement between sites of Bacteriophylla molecules in protein environment and presence of decoherence. Complex biological systems implement more truthful mechanisms beside chemical-quantum correlations to assure system's efficiency. In this study we investigate thermal quantum correlations in FMO protein of the photosynthetic apparatus of green sulfur bacteria by quantum discord measure. The results confirmed existence of remarkable quantum correlations of of BChla pigments in room temperature. This results approve involvement of quantum correlation mechanisms for information storage and retention in living organisms that could be useful for further evolutionary studies. Inspired idea of this study is potentially interesting to practice by the same procedure in genetic data transfer mechanisms.

  5. Nramp defines a family of membrane proteins.

    PubMed Central

    Cellier, M; Privé, G; Belouchi, A; Kwan, T; Rodrigues, V; Chia, W; Gros, P

    1995-01-01

    Nramp (natural resistance-associated macrophage protein) is a newly identified family of integral membrane proteins whose biochemical function is unknown. We report on the identification of Nramp homologs from the fly Drosophila melanogaster, the plant Oryza sativa, and the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Optimal alignment of protein sequences required insertion of very few gaps and revealed remarkable sequence identity of 28% (yeast), 40% (plant), and 55% (fly) with the mammalian proteins (46%, 58%, and 73% similarity), as well as a common predicted transmembrane topology. This family is defined by a highly conserved hydrophobic core encoding 10 transmembrane segments. Other features of this hydrophobic core include several invariant charged residues, helical periodicity of sequence conservation suggesting conserved and nonconserved faces for several transmembrane helices, a consensus transport signature on the intracytoplasmic face of the membrane, and structural determinants previously described in ion channels. These characteristics suggest that the Nramp polypeptides form part of a group of transporters or channels that act on as yet unidentified substrates. Images Fig. 1 PMID:7479731

  6. Amphipathic agents for membrane protein study.

    PubMed

    Sadaf, Aiman; Cho, Kyung Ho; Byrne, Bernadette; Chae, Pil Seok

    2015-01-01

    Membrane proteins (MPs) are insoluble in aqueous media as a result of incompatibility between the hydrophilic property of the solvent molecules and the hydrophobic nature of MP surfaces, normally associated with lipid membranes. Amphipathic compounds are necessary for extraction of these macromolecules from the native membranes and their maintenance in solution. The amphipathic agents surround the hydrophobic segments of MPs, thus serving as a membrane mimetic system. Of the available amphipathic agents, detergents are most widely used for MP manipulation. However, MPs encapsulated by conventional detergent micelles have a tendency to undergo structural degradation, hampering MP advance, and necessitating the development of novel detergents with enhanced efficacy for MP study. In this chapter, we will introduce both conventional and novel classes of detergents and discuss about the chemical structures, design principles, and efficacies of these compounds for MP solubilization and stabilization. The behaviors of those agents toward MP crystallization will be a primary topic in our discussion. This discussion highlights the common features of popular conventional/novel detergents essential for successful MP structural study. The conclusions reached by this discussion would not only enable MP scientists to rationally select a set of detergent candidates among a large number of detergents but also provide detergent inventors with useful guidelines in designing novel amphipathic systems. PMID:25950960

  7. Reconstitution of the membrane protein OmpF into biomimetic block copolymer-phospholipid hybrid membranes.

    PubMed

    Bieligmeyer, Matthias; Artukovic, Franjo; Nussberger, Stephan; Hirth, Thomas; Schiestel, Thomas; Müller, Michaela

    2016-01-01

    Structure and function of many transmembrane proteins are affected by their environment. In this respect, reconstitution of a membrane protein into a biomimetic polymer membrane can alter its function. To overcome this problem we used membranes formed by poly(1,4-isoprene-block-ethylene oxide) block copolymers blended with 1,2-diphytanoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine. By reconstituting the outer membrane protein OmpF from Escherichia coli into these membranes, we demonstrate functionality of this protein in biomimetic lipopolymer membranes, independent of the molecular weight of the block copolymers. At low voltages, the channel conductance of OmpF in 1 M KCl was around 2.3 nS. In line with these experiments, integration of OmpF was also revealed by impedance spectroscopy. Our results indicate that blending synthetic polymer membranes with phospholipids allows for the reconstitution of transmembrane proteins under preservation of protein function, independent of the membrane thickness. PMID:27547605

  8. Reconstitution of the membrane protein OmpF into biomimetic block copolymer–phospholipid hybrid membranes

    PubMed Central

    Bieligmeyer, Matthias; Artukovic, Franjo; Hirth, Thomas; Schiestel, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Summary Structure and function of many transmembrane proteins are affected by their environment. In this respect, reconstitution of a membrane protein into a biomimetic polymer membrane can alter its function. To overcome this problem we used membranes formed by poly(1,4-isoprene-block-ethylene oxide) block copolymers blended with 1,2-diphytanoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine. By reconstituting the outer membrane protein OmpF from Escherichia coli into these membranes, we demonstrate functionality of this protein in biomimetic lipopolymer membranes, independent of the molecular weight of the block copolymers. At low voltages, the channel conductance of OmpF in 1 M KCl was around 2.3 nS. In line with these experiments, integration of OmpF was also revealed by impedance spectroscopy. Our results indicate that blending synthetic polymer membranes with phospholipids allows for the reconstitution of transmembrane proteins under preservation of protein function, independent of the membrane thickness. PMID:27547605

  9. Identifying the quantum correlations in light-harvesting complexes

    SciTech Connect

    Bradler, Kamil; Wilde, Mark M.; Vinjanampathy, Sai; Uskov, Dmitry B.

    2010-12-15

    One of the major efforts in the quantum biological program is to subject biological systems to standard tests or measures of quantumness. These tests and measures should elucidate whether nontrivial quantum effects may be present in biological systems. Two such measures of quantum correlations are the quantum discord and the relative entropy of entanglement. Here, we show that the relative entropy of entanglement admits a simple analytic form when dynamics and accessible degrees of freedom are restricted to a zero- and single-excitation subspace. We also simulate and calculate the amount of quantum discord that is present in the Fenna-Matthews-Olson protein complex during the transfer of an excitation from a chlorosome antenna to a reaction center. We find that the single-excitation quantum discord and single-excitation relative entropy of entanglement are equal for all of our numerical simulations, but a proof of their general equality for this setting evades us for now. Also, some of our simulations demonstrate that the relative entropy of entanglement without the single-excitation restriction is much lower than the quantum discord. The first picosecond of dynamics is the relevant time scale for the transfer of the excitation, according to some sources in the literature. Our simulation results indicate that quantum correlations contribute a significant fraction of the total correlation during this first picosecond in many cases, at both cryogenic and physiological temperatures.

  10. Membrane curvature and its generation by BAR proteins

    PubMed Central

    Mim, Carsten; Unger, Vinzenz M

    2012-01-01

    Membranes are flexible barriers that surround the cell and its compartments. To execute vital functions such as locomotion or receptor turnover, cells need to control the shapes of their membranes. In part, this control is achieved through membrane-bending proteins, such as the bin/amphiphysin/rvs domain (BAR) proteins. Many open questions remain about the mechanisms by which membrane-bending proteins function. Addressing this shortfall, recent structures of BAR protein:membrane complexes support existing mechanistic models, but also produced novel insights into how BAR-domain proteins sense, stabilize and generate curvature. Here we review these recent findings, focusing on how BAR proteins interact with the membrane, and how the resulting scaffold structures might aid the recruitment of other proteins to the sites where membranes are bent. PMID:23058040

  11. Hydrophobic mismatch sorts SNARE proteins into distinct membrane domains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Milovanovic, Dragomir; Honigmann, Alf; Koike, Seiichi; Göttfert, Fabian; Pähler, Gesa; Junius, Meike; Müllar, Stefan; Diederichsen, Ulf; Janshoff, Andreas; Grubmüller, Helmut; Risselada, Herre J.; Eggeling, Christian; Hell, Stefan W.; van den Bogaart, Geert; Jahn, Reinhard

    2015-01-01

    The clustering of proteins and lipids in distinct microdomains is emerging as an important principle for the spatial patterning of biological membranes. Such domain formation can be the result of hydrophobic and ionic interactions with membrane lipids as well as of specific protein-protein interactions. Here using plasma membrane-resident SNARE proteins as model, we show that hydrophobic mismatch between the length of transmembrane domains (TMDs) and the thickness of the lipid membrane suffices to induce clustering of proteins. Even when the TMDs differ in length by only a single residue, hydrophobic mismatch can segregate structurally closely homologous membrane proteins in distinct membrane domains. Domain formation is further fine-tuned by interactions with polyanionic phosphoinositides and homo and heterotypic protein interactions. Our findings demonstrate that hydrophobic mismatch contributes to the structural organization of membranes.

  12. Membrane protein assembly: genetic, evolutionary and medical perspectives.

    PubMed

    Manoil, C; Traxler, B

    1995-01-01

    Lipid bilayers are delicate structures that are easily disrupted by a variety of amphipathic molecules. Yet the viability of a cell requires the continued assembly of large amphipathic proteins within its membranes without damage. The need to minimize bilayer disruption may account for a number of fundamental features of membrane protein assembly. These include the use of redundant sequence information to establish the topologies and folded structures of membrane proteins, and the existence of efficient mechanisms to rid cells of misassembled proteins. Most missense mutations that inactivate a membrane protein probably do so by altering the folding of the membrane-inserted structure rather than by rearranging the topology or by changing key residues involved directly in function. Such misfolded membrane proteins may be toxic to cells if they escape cellular safeguards. This toxicity may underlie some human degenerative diseases due to mutant membrane proteins. PMID:8825471

  13. Calcium ions are required for the enhanced thermal stability of the light-harvesting-reaction center core complex from thermophilic purple sulfur bacterium Thermochromatium tepidum.

    PubMed

    Kimura, Yukihiro; Yu, Long-Jiang; Hirano, Yu; Suzuki, Hiroaki; Wang, Zheng-Yu

    2009-01-01

    Thermochromatium tepidum is a thermophilic purple sulfur photosynthetic bacterium collected from the Mammoth Hot Springs, Yellowstone National Park. A previous study showed that the light-harvesting-reaction center core complex (LH1-RC) purified from this bacterium is highly stable at room temperature (Suzuki, H., Hirano, Y., Kimura, Y., Takaichi, S., Kobayashi, M., Miki, K., and Wang, Z.-Y. (2007) Biochim. Biophys. Acta 1767, 1057-1063). In this work, we demonstrate that thermal stability of the Tch. tepidum LH1-RC is much higher than that of its mesophilic counterparts, and the enhanced thermal stability requires Ca2+ as a cofactor. Removal of the Ca2+ from Tch. tepidum LH1-RC resulted in a complex with the same degree of thermal stability as that of the LH1-RCs purified from mesophilic bacteria. The enhanced thermal stability can be restored by addition of Ca2+ to the Ca2+-depleted LH1-RC, and this process is fully reversible. Interchange of the thermal stability between the two forms is accompanied by a shift of the LH1 Qy transition between 915 nm for the native and 880 nm for the Ca2+-depleted LH1-RC. Differential scanning calorimetry measurements reveal that degradation temperature of the native LH1-RC is 15 degrees C higher and the enthalpy change is about 28% larger than the Ca2+-depleted LH1-RC. Substitution of the Ca2+ with other metal cations caused a decrease in thermal stability of an extent depending on the properties of the cations. These results indicate that Ca2+ ions play a dual role in stabilizing the structure of the pigment-membrane protein complex and in altering its spectroscopic properties, and hence provide insight into the adaptive strategy of this photosynthetic organism to survive in extreme environments using natural resources. PMID:18977753

  14. Maximizing photosynthetic efficiency and culture productivity in cyanobacteria upon minimizing the phycobilisome light-harvesting antenna size.

    PubMed

    Kirst, Henning; Formighieri, Cinzia; Melis, Anastasios

    2014-10-01

    A phycocyanin-deletion mutant of Synechocystis (cyanobacteria) was generated upon replacement of the CPC-operon with a kanamycin resistance cassette. The Δcpc transformant strains (Δcpc) exhibited a green phenotype, compared to the blue-green of the wild type (WT), lacked the distinct phycocyanin absorbance at 625nm, and had a lower Chl per cell content and a lower PSI/PSII reaction center ratio compared to the WT. Molecular and genetic analyses showed replacement of all WT copies of the Synechocystis DNA with the transgenic version, thereby achieving genomic DNA homoplasmy. Biochemical analyses showed the absence of the phycocyanin α- and β-subunits, and the overexpression of the kanamycin resistance NPTI protein in the Δcpc. Physiological analyses revealed a higher, by a factor of about 2, intensity for the saturation of photosynthesis in the Δcpc compared to the WT. Under limiting intensities of illumination, growth of the Δcpc was slower than that of the WT. This difference in the rate of cell duplication diminished gradually as growth irradiance increased. Identical rates of cell duplication of about 13h for both WT and Δcpc were observed at about 800μmolphotonsm(-2)s(-1) or greater. Culture productivity analyses under simulated bright sunlight and high cell-density conditions showed that biomass accumulation by the Δcpc was 1.57-times greater than that achieved by the WT. Thus, the work provides first-time direct evidence of the applicability of the Truncated Light-harvesting Antenna (TLA)-concept in cyanobacteria, entailing substantial improvements in the photosynthetic efficiency and productivity of mass cultures upon minimizing the phycobilisome light-harvesting antenna size. PMID:25046143

  15. Excitons in a photosynthetic light-harvesting system: A combined molecular dynamics, quantum chemistry, and polaron model study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Damjanović, Ana; Kosztin, Ioan; Kleinekathöfer, Ulrich; Schulten, Klaus

    2002-03-01

    The dynamics of pigment-pigment and pigment-protein interactions in light-harvesting complexes is studied with an approach that combines molecular dynamics simulations with quantum chemistry calculations and a polaron model analysis. The molecular dynamics simulation of light-harvesting (LH) complexes was performed on an 87 055 atom system comprised of a LH-II complex of Rhodospirillum molischianum embedded in a lipid bilayer and surrounded with appropriate water layers. For each of the 16 B850 bacteriochlorophylls (BChls), we performed 400 ab initio quantum chemistry calculations on geometries that emerged from the molecular dynamical simulations, determining the fluctuations of pigment excitation energies as a function of time. From the results of these calculations we construct a time-dependent Hamiltonian of the B850 exciton system from which we determine within linear response theory the absorption spectrum. Finally, a polaron model is introduced to describe both the excitonic and coupled phonon degrees of freedom by quantum mechanics. The exciton-phonon coupling that enters into the polaron model, and the corresponding phonon spectral function, are derived from the molecular dynamics and quantum chemistry simulations. The model predicts that excitons in the B850 BChl ring are delocalized over five pigments at room temperature. Also, the polaron model permits the calculation of the absorption and circular dichroism spectra of the B850 excitons from the sole knowledge of the autocorrelation function of the excitation energies of individual BChls, which is readily available from the combined molecular dynamics and quantum chemistry simulations. The obtained results are found to be in good agreement with the experimentally measured absorption and circular dichroism spectra.

  16. Anisotropic organization and microscopic manipulation of self-assembling synthetic porphyrin microrods that mimic chlorosomes: bacterial light-harvesting systems.

    PubMed

    Chappaz-Gillot, Cyril; Marek, Peter L; Blaive, Bruno J; Canard, Gabriel; Bürck, Jochen; Garab, Gyozo; Hahn, Horst; Jávorfi, Tamás; Kelemen, Loránd; Krupke, Ralph; Mössinger, Dennis; Ormos, Pál; Reddy, Chilla Malla; Roussel, Christian; Steinbach, Gábor; Szabó, Milán; Ulrich, Anne S; Vanthuyne, Nicolas; Vijayaraghavan, Aravind; Zupcanova, Anita; Balaban, Teodor Silviu

    2012-01-18

    Being able to control in time and space the positioning, orientation, movement, and sense of rotation of nano- to microscale objects is currently an active research area in nanoscience, having diverse nanotechnological applications. In this paper, we demonstrate unprecedented control and maneuvering of rod-shaped or tubular nanostructures with high aspect ratios which are formed by self-assembling synthetic porphyrins. The self-assembly algorithm, encoded by appended chemical-recognition groups on the periphery of these porphyrins, is the same as the one operating for chlorosomal bacteriochlorophylls (BChl's). Chlorosomes, rod-shaped organelles with relatively long-range molecular order, are the most efficient naturally occurring light-harvesting systems. They are used by green photosynthetic bacteria to trap visible and infrared light of minute intensities even at great depths, e.g., 100 m below water surface or in volcanic vents in the absence of solar radiation. In contrast to most other natural light-harvesting systems, the chlorosomal antennae are devoid of a protein scaffold to orient the BChl's; thus, they are an attractive goal for mimicry by synthetic chemists, who are able to engineer more robust chromophores to self-assemble. Functional devices with environmentally friendly chromophores-which should be able to act as photosensitizers within hybrid solar cells, leading to high photon-to-current conversion efficiencies even under low illumination conditions-have yet to be fabricated. The orderly manner in which the BChl's and their synthetic counterparts self-assemble imparts strong diamagnetic and optical anisotropies and flow/shear characteristics to their nanostructured assemblies, allowing them to be manipulated by electrical, magnetic, or tribomechanical forces. PMID:22148684

  17. A saposin-lipoprotein nanoparticle system for membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Frauenfeld, Jens; Löving, Robin; Armache, Jean-Paul; Sonnen, Andreas F-P; Guettou, Fatma; Moberg, Per; Zhu, Lin; Jegerschöld, Caroline; Flayhan, Ali; Briggs, John A G; Garoff, Henrik; Löw, Christian; Cheng, Yifan; Nordlund, Pär

    2016-04-01

    A limiting factor in membrane protein research is the ability to solubilize and stabilize such proteins. Detergents are used most often for solubilizing membrane proteins, but they are associated with protein instability and poor compatibility with structural and biophysical studies. Here we present a saposin-lipoprotein nanoparticle system, Salipro, which allows for the reconstitution of membrane proteins in a lipid environment that is stabilized by a scaffold of saposin proteins. We demonstrate the applicability of the method on two purified membrane protein complexes as well as by the direct solubilization and nanoparticle incorporation of a viral membrane protein complex from the virus membrane. Our approach facilitated high-resolution structural studies of the bacterial peptide transporter PeptTSo2 by single-particle cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) and allowed us to stabilize the HIV envelope glycoprotein in a functional state. PMID:26950744

  18. Large-scale proteomic analysis of membrane proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Ahram, Mamoun; Springer, David L.

    2004-10-01

    Proteomic analysis of membrane proteins is promising in identification of novel candidates as drug targets and/or disease biomarkers. Despite notable technological developments, obstacles related to extraction and solubilization of membrane proteins are frequently encountered. A critical discussion of the different preparative methods of membrane proteins is offered in relation to downstream proteomic applications, mainly gel-based analyses and mass spectrometry. Unknown proteins are often identified by high-throughput profiling of membrane proteins. In search for novel membrane proteins, analysis of protein sequences using computational tools is performed to predict for the presence of transmembrane domains. Here, we also present these bioinformatic tools with the human proteome as a case study. Along with technological innovations, advancements in the areas of sample preparation and computational prediction of membrane proteins will lead to exciting discoveries.

  19. Membrane shape instabilities induced by BAR domain proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baumgart, Tobias

    2014-03-01

    Membrane curvature has developed into a forefront of membrane biophysics. Numerous proteins involved in membrane curvature sensing and membrane curvature generation have recently been discovered, including proteins containing the crescent-shaped BAR domain as membrane binding and shaping module. Accordingly, the structure determination of these proteins and their multimeric complexes is increasingly well-understood. Substantially less understood, however, are thermodynamic and kinetic aspects and the detailed mechanisms of how these proteins interact with membranes in a curvature-dependent manner. New experimental approaches need to be combined with established techniques to be able to fill in these missing details. Here we use model membrane systems in combination with a variety of biophysical techniques to characterize mechanistic aspects of BAR domain protein function. This includes a characterization of membrane curvature sensing and membrane generation. We also establish kinetic and thermodynamic aspects of BAR protein dimerization in solution, and investigate kinetic aspects of membrane binding. We present two new approaches to investigate membrane shape instabilities and demonstrate that membrane shape instabilities can be controlled by protein binding and lateral membrane tension. This work is supported through NIH grant GM-097552 and NSF grant CBET-1053857.

  20. Dynamic nuclear polarization methods in solids and solutions to explore membrane proteins and membrane systems.

    PubMed

    Cheng, Chi-Yuan; Han, Songi

    2013-01-01

    Membrane proteins regulate vital cellular processes, including signaling, ion transport, and vesicular trafficking. Obtaining experimental access to their structures, conformational fluctuations, orientations, locations, and hydration in membrane environments, as well as the lipid membrane properties, is critical to understanding their functions. Dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) of frozen solids can dramatically boost the sensitivity of current solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance tools to enhance access to membrane protein structures in native membrane environments. Overhauser DNP in the solution state can map out the local and site-specific hydration dynamics landscape of membrane proteins and lipid membranes, critically complementing the structural and dynamics information obtained by electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy. Here, we provide an overview of how DNP methods in solids and solutions can significantly increase our understanding of membrane protein structures, dynamics, functions, and hydration in complex biological membrane environments. PMID:23331309

  1. Dynamic Nuclear Polarization Methods in Solids and Solutions to Explore Membrane Proteins and Membrane Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, Chi-Yuan; Han, Songi

    2013-04-01

    Membrane proteins regulate vital cellular processes, including signaling, ion transport, and vesicular trafficking. Obtaining experimental access to their structures, conformational fluctuations, orientations, locations, and hydration in membrane environments, as well as the lipid membrane properties, is critical to understanding their functions. Dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP) of frozen solids can dramatically boost the sensitivity of current solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance tools to enhance access to membrane protein structures in native membrane environments. Overhauser DNP in the solution state can map out the local and site-specific hydration dynamics landscape of membrane proteins and lipid membranes, critically complementing the structural and dynamics information obtained by electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy. Here, we provide an overview of how DNP methods in solids and solutions can significantly increase our understanding of membrane protein structures, dynamics, functions, and hydration in complex biological membrane environments.

  2. Mass Spectrometry of Membrane Proteins: A Focus on Aquaporins

    PubMed Central

    Schey, Kevin L.; Grey, Angus C.; Nicklay, Joshua J.

    2015-01-01

    Membrane proteins are abundant, critically important biomolecules that conduct essential functions in all cells and are the targets of a significant number of therapeutic drugs. However, the analysis of their expression, modification, protein–protein interactions, and structure by mass spectrometry has lagged behind similar studies of soluble proteins. Here we review the limitations to analysis of integral membrane and membrane-associated proteins and highlight advances in sample preparation and mass spectrometry methods that have led to the successful analysis of this protein class. Advances in the analysis of membrane protein posttranslational modification, protein–protein interaction, protein structure, and tissue distributions by imaging mass spectrometry are discussed. Furthermore, we focus our discussion on the application of mass spectrometry for the analysis of aquaporins as a prototypical integral membrane protein and how advances in analytical methods have revealed new biological insights into the structure and function of this family of proteins. PMID:23394619

  3. Fingerprinting the macro-organisation of pigment-protein complexes in plant thylakoid membranes in vivo by circular-dichroism spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Tóth, Tünde N; Rai, Neha; Solymosi, Katalin; Zsiros, Ottó; Schröder, Wolfgang P; Garab, Győző; van Amerongen, Herbert; Horton, Peter; Kovács, László

    2016-09-01

    Macro-organisation of the protein complexes in plant thylakoid membranes plays important roles in the regulation and fine-tuning of photosynthetic activity. These delicate structures might, however, undergo substantial changes during isolating the thylakoid membranes or during sample preparations, e.g., for electron microscopy. Circular-dichroism (CD) spectroscopy is a non-invasive technique which can thus be used on intact samples. Via excitonic and psi-type CD bands, respectively, it carries information on short-range excitonic pigment-pigment interactions and the macro-organisation (chiral macrodomains) of pigment-protein complexes (psi, polymer or salt-induced). In order to obtain more specific information on the origin of the major psi-type CD bands, at around (+)506, (-)674 and (+)690nm, we fingerprinted detached leaves and isolated thylakoid membranes of wild-type and mutant plants and also tested the effects of different environmental conditions in vivo. We show that (i) the chiral macrodomains disassemble upon mild detergent treatments, but not after crosslinking the protein complexes; (ii) in different wild-type leaves of dicotyledonous and monocotyledonous angiosperms the CD features are quite robust, displaying very similar excitonic and psi-type bands, suggesting similar protein composition and (macro-) organisation of photosystem II (PSII) supercomplexes in the grana; (iii) the main positive psi-type bands depend on light-harvesting protein II contents of the membranes; (iv) the (+)506nm band appears only in the presence of PSII-LHCII supercomplexes and does not depend on the xanthophyll composition of the membranes. Hence, CD spectroscopy can be used to detect different macro-domains in the thylakoid membranes with different outer antenna compositions in vivo. PMID:27154055

  4. Hydrophobic mismatch sorts SNARE proteins into distinct membrane domains

    PubMed Central

    Milovanovic, Dragomir; Honigmann, Alf; Koike, Seiichi; Göttfert, Fabian; Pähler, Gesa; Junius, Meike; Müllar, Stefan; Diederichsen, Ulf; Janshoff, Andreas; Grubmüller, Helmut; Risselada, Herre J.; Eggeling, Christian; Hell, Stefan W.; van den Bogaart, Geert; Jahn, Reinhard

    2015-01-01

    The clustering of proteins and lipids in distinct microdomains is emerging as an important principle for the spatial patterning of biological membranes. Such domain formation can be the result of hydrophobic and ionic interactions with membrane lipids as well as of specific protein–protein interactions. Here using plasma membrane-resident SNARE proteins as model, we show that hydrophobic mismatch between the length of transmembrane domains (TMDs) and the thickness of the lipid membrane suffices to induce clustering of proteins. Even when the TMDs differ in length by only a single residue, hydrophobic mismatch can segregate structurally closely homologous membrane proteins in distinct membrane domains. Domain formation is further fine-tuned by interactions with polyanionic phosphoinositides and homo and heterotypic protein interactions. Our findings demonstrate that hydrophobic mismatch contributes to the structural organization of membranes. PMID:25635869

  5. A Prediction Model for Membrane Proteins Using Moments Based Features.

    PubMed

    Butt, Ahmad Hassan; Khan, Sher Afzal; Jamil, Hamza; Rasool, Nouman; Khan, Yaser Daanial

    2016-01-01

    The most expedient unit of the human body is its cell. Encapsulated within the cell are many infinitesimal entities and molecules which are protected by a cell membrane. The proteins that are associated with this lipid based bilayer cell membrane are known as membrane proteins and are considered to play a significant role. These membrane proteins exhibit their effect in cellular activities inside and outside of the cell. According to the scientists in pharmaceutical organizations, these membrane proteins perform key task in drug interactions. In this study, a technique is presented that is based on various computationally intelligent methods used for the prediction of membrane protein without the experimental use of mass spectrometry. Statistical moments were used to extract features and furthermore a Multilayer Neural Network was trained using backpropagation for the prediction of membrane proteins. Results show that the proposed technique performs better than existing methodologies. PMID:26966690

  6. A Prediction Model for Membrane Proteins Using Moments Based Features

    PubMed Central

    Butt, Ahmad Hassan; Khan, Sher Afzal; Jamil, Hamza; Rasool, Nouman; Khan, Yaser Daanial

    2016-01-01

    The most expedient unit of the human body is its cell. Encapsulated within the cell are many infinitesimal entities and molecules which are protected by a cell membrane. The proteins that are associated with this lipid based bilayer cell membrane are known as membrane proteins and are considered to play a significant role. These membrane proteins exhibit their effect in cellular activities inside and outside of the cell. According to the scientists in pharmaceutical organizations, these membrane proteins perform key task in drug interactions. In this study, a technique is presented that is based on various computationally intelligent methods used for the prediction of membrane protein without the experimental use of mass spectrometry. Statistical moments were used to extract features and furthermore a Multilayer Neural Network was trained using backpropagation for the prediction of membrane proteins. Results show that the proposed technique performs better than existing methodologies. PMID:26966690

  7. Role of membrane contact sites in protein import into mitochondria

    PubMed Central

    Horvath, Susanne E; Rampelt, Heike; Oeljeklaus, Silke; Warscheid, Bettina; van der Laan, Martin; Pfanner, Nikolaus

    2015-01-01

    Mitochondria import more than 1,000 different proteins from the cytosol. The proteins are synthesized as precursors on cytosolic ribosomes and are translocated by protein transport machineries of the mitochondrial membranes. Five main pathways for protein import into mitochondria have been identified. Most pathways use the translocase of the outer mitochondrial membrane (TOM) as the entry gate into mitochondria. Depending on specific signals contained in the precursors, the proteins are subsequently transferred to different intramitochondrial translocases. In this article, we discuss the connection between protein import and mitochondrial membrane architecture. Mitochondria possess two membranes. It is a long-standing question how contact sites between outer and inner membranes are formed and which role the contact sites play in the translocation of precursor proteins. A major translocation contact site is formed between the TOM complex and the presequence translocase of the inner membrane (TIM23 complex), promoting transfer of presequence-carrying preproteins to the mitochondrial inner membrane and matrix. Recent findings led to the identification of contact sites that involve the mitochondrial contact site and cristae organizing system (MICOS) of the inner membrane. MICOS plays a dual role. It is crucial for maintaining the inner membrane cristae architecture and forms contacts sites to the outer membrane that promote translocation of precursor proteins into the intermembrane space and outer membrane of mitochondria. The view is emerging that the mitochondrial protein translocases do not function as independent units, but are embedded in a network of interactions with machineries that control mitochondrial activity and architecture. PMID:25514890

  8. Mechanisms of photoprotection and nonphotochemical quenching in pea light-harvesting complex at 2.5 A resolution.

    PubMed

    Standfuss, Jörg; Terwisscha van Scheltinga, Anke C; Lamborghini, Matteo; Kühlbrandt, Werner

    2005-03-01

    The plant light-harvesting complex of photosystem II (LHC-II) collects and transmits solar energy for photosynthesis in chloroplast membranes and has essential roles in regulation of photosynthesis and in photoprotection. The 2.5 A structure of pea LHC-II determined by X-ray crystallography of stacked two-dimensional crystals shows how membranes interact to form chloroplast grana, and reveals the mutual arrangement of 42 chlorophylls a and b, 12 carotenoids and six lipids in the LHC-II trimer. Spectral assignment of individual chlorophylls indicates the flow of energy in the complex and the mechanism of photoprotection in two close chlorophyll a-lutein pairs. We propose a simple mechanism for the xanthophyll-related, slow component of nonphotochemical quenching in LHC-II, by which excess energy is transferred to a zeaxanthin replacing violaxanthin in its binding site, and dissipated as heat. Our structure shows the complex in a quenched state, which may be relevant for the rapid, pH-induced component of nonphotochemical quenching. PMID:15719016

  9. Mechanisms of photoprotection and nonphotochemical quenching in pea light-harvesting complex at 2.5 Å resolution

    PubMed Central

    Standfuss, Jörg; Terwisscha van Scheltinga, Anke C; Lamborghini, Matteo; Kühlbrandt, Werner

    2005-01-01

    The plant light-harvesting complex of photosystem II (LHC-II) collects and transmits solar energy for photosynthesis in chloroplast membranes and has essential roles in regulation of photosynthesis and in photoprotection. The 2.5 Å structure of pea LHC-II determined by X-ray crystallography of stacked two-dimensional crystals shows how membranes interact to form chloroplast grana, and reveals the mutual arrangement of 42 chlorophylls a and b, 12 carotenoids and six lipids in the LHC-II trimer. Spectral assignment of individual chlorophylls indicates the flow of energy in the complex and the mechanism of photoprotection in two close chlorophyll a–lutein pairs. We propose a simple mechanism for the xanthophyll-related, slow component of nonphotochemical quenching in LHC-II, by which excess energy is transferred to a zeaxanthin replacing violaxanthin in its binding site, and dissipated as heat. Our structure shows the complex in a quenched state, which may be relevant for the rapid, pH-induced component of nonphotochemical quenching. PMID:15719016

  10. Dynamic membrane protein topological switching upon changes in phospholipid environment

    PubMed Central

    Vitrac, Heidi; MacLean, David M.; Jayaraman, Vasanthi; Bogdanov, Mikhail; Dowhan, William

    2015-01-01

    A fundamental objective in membrane biology is to understand and predict how a protein sequence folds and orients in a lipid bilayer. Establishing the principles governing membrane protein folding is central to understanding the molecular basis for membrane proteins that display multiple topologies, the intrinsic dynamic organization of membrane proteins, and membrane protein conformational disorders resulting in disease. We previously established that lactose permease of Escherichia coli displays a mixture of topological conformations and undergoes postassembly bidirectional changes in orientation within the lipid bilayer triggered by a change in membrane phosphatidylethanolamine content, both in vivo and in vitro. However, the physiological implications and mechanism of dynamic structural reorganization of membrane proteins due to changes in lipid environment are limited by the lack of approaches addressing the kinetic parameters of transmembrane protein flipping. In this study, real-time fluorescence spectroscopy was used to determine the rates of protein flipping in the lipid bilayer in both directions and transbilayer flipping of lipids triggered by a change in proteoliposome lipid composition. Our results provide, for the first time to our knowledge, a dynamic picture of these events and demonstrate that membrane protein topological rearrangements in response to lipid modulations occur rapidly following a threshold change in proteoliposome lipid composition. Protein flipping was not accompanied by extensive lipid-dependent unfolding of transmembrane domains. Establishment of lipid bilayer asymmetry was not required but may accelerate the rate of protein flipping. Membrane protein flipping was found to accelerate the rate of transbilayer flipping of lipids. PMID:26512118

  11. Protein crystals on phase-separating model membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manley, Suliana; Horton, Margaret; Leszczynski, Szymon; Gast, Alice

    2006-03-01

    We study the interplay between the crystallization of proteins tethered to membranes and separation within the membranes of giant unilamellar vesicles (GUVs) composed of DOPC, sphingomyelin (SM), and cholesterol. These model membranes phase separate into coexisting liquid domains below a miscibility transition temperature. This phase separation captures some aspects of the formation of lipid rafts in cell membranes and demonstrates the influence of membrane composition on raft formation. Real cell membranes have a much more complicated structure. There are additional physical constraints present in cell membranes, such as their attachment to the cytoskeleton and the presence of membrane bound proteins. The self-association of membrane proteins can influence the membrane phase behavior. We begin to investigate these effects on model tethered protein- loaded membranes by incorporating a small amount of biotin-X- DPPE into our GUVs. The biotinylated lipid partitions into a cholesterol-poor phase; thus, streptavidin binds preferentially to one of the membrane phases. As streptavidin assembles to form crystalline domains, it restricts the membrane mobility. We examine the effect of this protein association on lipid phase separation, as well as the effect of the lipid phase separation on the crystallization of the tethered proteins.

  12. Membrane Protein Structure and Dynamics from NMR Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hong, Mei; Zhang, Yuan; Hu, Fanghao

    2012-05-01

    We review the current state of membrane protein structure determination using solid-state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. Multidimensional magic-angle-spinning correlation NMR combined with oriented-sample experiments has made it possible to measure a full panel of structural constraints of membrane proteins directly in lipid bilayers. These constraints include torsion angles, interatomic distances, oligomeric structure, protein dynamics, ligand structure and dynamics, and protein orientation and depth of insertion in the lipid bilayer. Using solid-state NMR, researchers have studied potassium channels, proton channels, Ca2+ pumps, G protein-coupled receptors, bacterial outer membrane proteins, and viral fusion proteins to elucidate their mechanisms of action. Many of these membrane proteins have also been investigated in detergent micelles using solution NMR. Comparison of the solid-state and solution NMR structures provides important insights into the effects of the solubilizing environment on membrane protein structure and dynamics.

  13. Vibronic origin of long-lived coherence in an artificial molecular light harvester

    PubMed Central

    Lim, James; Paleček, David; Caycedo-Soler, Felipe; Lincoln, Craig N.; Prior, Javier; von Berlepsch, Hans; Huelga, Susana F.; Plenio, Martin B.; Zigmantas, Donatas; Hauer, Jürgen

    2015-01-01

    Natural and artificial light-harvesting processes have recently gained new interest. Signatures of long-lasting coherence in spectroscopic signals of biological systems have been repeatedly observed, albeit their origin is a matter of ongoing debate, as it is unclear how the loss of coherence due to interaction with the noisy environments in such systems is averted. Here we report experimental and theoretical verification of coherent exciton–vibrational (vibronic) coupling as the origin of long-lasting coherence in an artificial light harvester, a molecular J-aggregate. In this macroscopically aligned tubular system, polarization-controlled 2D spectroscopy delivers an uncongested and specific optical response as an ideal foundation for an in-depth theoretical description. We derive analytical expressions that show under which general conditions vibronic coupling leads to prolonged excited-state coherence. PMID:26158602

  14. Nature-inspired light-harvesting liquid crystalline porphyrins for organic photovoltaics

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Lanfang; Kang, Shin-Woong; Harden, John; Sun, Qingjiang; Zhou, Xiaoli; Dai, Liming; Jakli, Antal; Kumar, Satyendra; Li, Quan

    2008-12-22

    A new class of nanoscale light-harvesting discotic liquid crystalline porphyrins, with the same basic structure of the best photoreceptor in nature (chlorophyll), was synthesized. These materials can be exceptionally aligned into a highly ordered architecture in which the columns formed by intermolecular {pi}-{pi} stacking are spontaneously perpendicular to the substrate. The homeotropic alignment, well confirmed by synchrotron X-ray diffraction, could not only provide the most efficient pathway for hole conduction along the columnar axis crossing the device thickness, but also offer the largest area to the incident light for optimized light harvesting. Their preliminary photocurrent generation and photovoltaic performances were also demonstrated. The results provide new and efficient pathways to the development of organic photovoltaics by using homeotropically aligned liquid crystal thin films.

  15. Quantum coherence enabled determination of the energy landscape in light-harvesting complex II.

    PubMed

    Calhoun, Tessa R; Ginsberg, Naomi S; Schlau-Cohen, Gabriela S; Cheng, Yuan-Chung; Ballottari, Matteo; Bassi, Roberto; Fleming, Graham R

    2009-12-24

    The near-unity efficiency of energy transfer in photosynthesis makes photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes a promising avenue for developing new renewable energy technologies. Knowledge of the energy landscape of these complexes is essential in understanding their function, but its experimental determination has proven elusive. Here, the observation of quantum coherence using two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy is employed to directly measure the 14 lowest electronic energy levels in light-harvesting complex II (LHCII), the most abundant antenna complex in plants containing approximately 50% of the world's chlorophyll. We observe that the electronically excited states are relatively evenly distributed, highlighting an important design principle of photosynthetic complexes that explains the observed ultrafast intracomplex energy transfer in LHCII. PMID:20014871

  16. Modeling of fluorescence quenching by lutein in the plant light-harvesting complex LHCII.

    PubMed

    Duffy, C D P; Chmeliov, J; Macernis, M; Sulskus, J; Valkunas, L; Ruban, A V

    2013-09-26

    Photoprotective non-photochemical quenching (NPQ) in higher plants is the result of the formation of energy quenching traps in the light-harvesting antenna of photosystem II (PSII). It has been proposed that this quenching trap is a lutein molecule closely associated with the chlorophyll terminal emitter of the major light-harvesting complex LHCII. We have used a combination of time-dependent density functional theory (TD-DFT) and the semiempirical MNDO-CAS-CI method to model the chlorophyll-lutein energy transfer dynamics of the highly quenched crystal structure of LHCII. Our calculations reveal that the incoherent "hopping" of energy from Chla612 to the short-lived, dipole forbidden 2(1)A(g)(-) state of lutein620 accounts for the strong fluorescence quenching observed in these crystals. This adds weight to the argument that the same dissipative pathway is responsible for in vivo NPQ. PMID:23234311

  17. Excited state coherent dynamics in light-harvesting complexes from photosynthetic marine algae

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richards, G. H.; Wilk, K. E.; Curmi, P. M. G.; Quiney, H. M.; Davis, J. A.

    2012-08-01

    We explore coherence dynamics in light-harvesting complexes and their interactions with other electronic states and vibrational modes. This is achieved by utilizing a two-colour four-wave mixing spectroscopy to excite and analyse a specific coherence pathway in the phycocyanin-645 (PC645) light-harvesting complex. We observe the dephasing rate increase as a function of temperature and oscillations in the signal intensity as a function of waiting time which reveals coherent excitation of pathways not directly resonant with the laser pulses. This coherent excitation of non-resonant electronic states implies strong coupling to phonon modes, which is necessary if coherent energy transfer between non-resonant states is to play any role in photosynthetic energy transfer.

  18. Structure Determination of Membrane Proteins by Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Opella, Stanley J.

    2013-06-01

    Many biological membranes consist of 50% or more (by weight) membrane proteins, which constitute approximately one-third of all proteins expressed in biological organisms. Helical membrane proteins function as receptors, enzymes, and transporters, among other unique cellular roles. Additionally, most drugs have membrane proteins as their receptors, notably the superfamily of G protein-coupled receptors with seven transmembrane helices. Determining the structures of membrane proteins is a daunting task because of the effects of the membrane environment; specifically, it has been difficult to combine biologically compatible environments with the requirements for the established methods of structure determination. There is strong motivation to determine the structures in their native phospholipid bilayer environment so that perturbations from nonnatural lipids and phases do not have to be taken into account. At present, the only method that can work with proteins in liquid crystalline phospholipid bilayers is solid-state NMR spectroscopy.

  19. Marginally hydrophobic transmembrane α-helices shaping membrane protein folding

    PubMed Central

    De Marothy, Minttu T; Elofsson, Arne

    2015-01-01

    Cells have developed an incredible machinery to facilitate the insertion of membrane proteins into the membrane. While we have a fairly good understanding of the mechanism and determinants of membrane integration, more data is needed to understand the insertion of membrane proteins with more complex insertion and folding pathways. This review will focus on marginally hydrophobic transmembrane helices and their influence on membrane protein folding. These weakly hydrophobic transmembrane segments are by themselves not recognized by the translocon and therefore rely on local sequence context for membrane integration. How can such segments reside within the membrane? We will discuss this in the light of features found in the protein itself as well as the environment it resides in. Several characteristics in proteins have been described to influence the insertion of marginally hydrophobic helices. Additionally, the influence of biological membranes is significant. To begin with, the actual cost for having polar groups within the membrane may not be as high as expected; the presence of proteins in the membrane as well as characteristics of some amino acids may enable a transmembrane helix to harbor a charged residue. The lipid environment has also been shown to directly influence the topology as well as membrane boundaries of transmembrane helices—implying a dynamic relationship between membrane proteins and their environment. PMID:25970811

  20. Molecular cloning and characterization of the light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b gene from the pigeon pea (Cajanus cajan).

    PubMed

    Qiao, Guang; Wen, Xiao-Peng; Zhang, Ting

    2015-12-01

    Light-harvesting chlorophyll a/b-binding proteins (LHCB) have been implicated in the stress response. In this study, a gene encoding LHCB in the pigeon pea was cloned and characterized. Based on the sequence of a previously obtained 327 bp Est, a full-length 793 bp cDNA was cloned using the rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) method. It was designated CcLHCB1 and encoded a 262 amino acid protein. The calculated molecular weight of the CcLHCB1 protein was 27.89 kDa, and the theoretical isoelectric point was 5.29. Homology search and sequence multi-alignment demonstrated that the CcLHCB1 protein sequence shared a high identity with LHCB from other plants. Bioinformatics analysis revealed that CcLHCB1 was a hydrophobic protein with three transmembrane domains. By fluorescent quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR), CcLHCB1 mRNA transcripts were detectable in different tissues (leaf, stem, and root), with the highest level found in the leaf. The expression of CcLHCB1 mRNA in the leaves was up-regulated by drought stimulation and AM inoculation. Our results provide the basis for a better understanding of the molecular organization of LCHB and might be useful for understanding the interaction between plants and microbes in the future. PMID:26329890

  1. Designing Mimics of Membrane Active Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Sgolastra, Federica; deRonde, Brittany M.; Sarapas, Joel M.; Som, Abhigyan; Tew, Gregory N.

    2014-01-01

    CONSPECTUS As a semi-permeable barrier that controls the flux of biomolecules in and out the cell, the plasma membrane is critical in cell function and survival. Many proteins interact with the plasma membrane and modulate its physiology. Within this large landscape of membrane-active molecules, researchers have focused significant attention on two specific classes of peptides, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) and cell penetrating peptides (CPPs) because of their unique properties. In this account, we describe our efforts over the last decade to build and understand synthetic mimics of antimicrobial peptides (SMAMPs). These endeavors represent one specific example of a much larger effort to understand how synthetic molecules interact with and manipulate the plasma membrane. Using both defined molecular weight oligomers and easier to produce, but heterogeneous, polymers, it has been possible to generate scaffolds with biological potency superior to the natural analogs. In one case, a compound has progressed through a phase II clinical trial for pan)staph infections. Modern biophysical assays highlighted the interplay between the synthetic scaffold and lipid composition leading to negative Gaussian curvature, a requirement for both pore formation and endosomal escape. The complexity of this interplay between lipids, bilayer components, and the scaffolds remains to be better resolved, but significant new insight has been provided. It is worthwhile to consider the various aspects of permeation and how these are related to ‘pore formation.’ More recently, our efforts have expanded toward protein transduction domains, or cell penetrating peptide, mimics. The combination of unique molecular scaffolds and guanidinium) rich side chains has produced an array of polymers with robust transduction (and delivery) activity. Being a new area, the fundamental interactions between these new scaffolds and the plasma membrane are just beginning to be understood. Negative Gaussian

  2. Light-Harvesting Nanotubes Formed by Supramolecular Assembly of Aromatic Oligophosphates.

    PubMed

    Bösch, Caroline D; Langenegger, Simon M; Häner, Robert

    2016-08-16

    A 2,7-disubstituted phosphodiester-linked phenanthrene trimer forms tubular structures in aqueous media. Chromophores are arranged in H-aggregates. Incorporation of small quantities of pyrene results in the development of light-harvesting nanotubes in which phenanthrenes act as antenna chromophores and pyrenes as energy acceptors. Energy collection is most efficient after excitation at the phenanthrene H-band. Fluorescence quantum yields up to 23 % are reached in pyrene doped, supramolecular nanotubes. PMID:27375116

  3. Atomistic mechanisms of rapid energy transport in light-harvesting molecules

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ohmura, Satoshi; Koga, Shiro; Akai, Ichiro; Shimojo, Fuyuki; Kalia, Rajiv K.; Nakano, Aiichiro; Vashishta, Priya

    2011-03-01

    Synthetic supermolecules such as π-conjugated light-harvesting dendrimers efficiently harvest energy from sunlight, which is of significant importance for the global energy problem. Key to their success is rapid transport of electronic excitation energy from peripheral antennas to photochemical reaction cores, the atomistic mechanisms of which remains elusive. Here, quantum-mechanical molecular dynamics simulation incorporating nonadiabatic electronic transitions reveals the key molecular motion that significantly accelerates the energy transport based on the Dexter mechanism.

  4. Vertebrate Membrane Proteins: Structure, Function, and Insights from Biophysical Approaches

    PubMed Central

    MÜLLER, DANIEL J.; WU, NAN; PALCZEWSKI, KRZYSZTOF

    2008-01-01

    Membrane proteins are key targets for pharmacological intervention because they are vital for cellular function. Here, we analyze recent progress made in the understanding of the structure and function of membrane proteins with a focus on rhodopsin and development of atomic force microscopy techniques to study biological membranes. Membrane proteins are compartmentalized to carry out extra- and intracellular processes. Biological membranes are densely populated with membrane proteins that occupy approximately 50% of their volume. In most cases membranes contain lipid rafts, protein patches, or paracrystalline formations that lack the higher-order symmetry that would allow them to be characterized by diffraction methods. Despite many technical difficulties, several crystal structures of membrane proteins that illustrate their internal structural organization have been determined. Moreover, high-resolution atomic force microscopy, near-field scanning optical microscopy, and other lower resolution techniques have been used to investigate these structures. Single-molecule force spectroscopy tracks interactions that stabilize membrane proteins and those that switch their functional state; this spectroscopy can be applied to locate a ligand-binding site. Recent development of this technique also reveals the energy landscape of a membrane protein, defining its folding, reaction pathways, and kinetics. Future development and application of novel approaches during the coming years should provide even greater insights to the understanding of biological membrane organization and function. PMID:18321962

  5. Diffusing proteins on a fluctuating membrane: Analytical theory and simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reister-Gottfried, Ellen; Leitenberger, Stefan M.; Seifert, Udo

    2010-03-01

    Using analytical calculations and computer simulations, we consider both the lateral diffusion of a membrane protein and the fluctuation spectrum of the membrane in which the protein is embedded. The membrane protein interacts with the membrane shape through its spontaneous curvature and bending rigidity. The lateral motion of the protein may be viewed as diffusion in an effective potential, hence, the effective mobility is always reduced compared to the case of free diffusion. Using a rigorous path-integral approach, we derive an analytical expression for the effective diffusion coefficient for small ratios of temperature and bending rigidity, which is the biologically relevant limit. Simulations show very good quantitative agreement with our analytical result. The analysis of the correlation functions contributing to the diffusion coefficient shows that the correlations between the stochastic force of the protein and the response in the membrane shape are responsible for the reduction. Our quantitative analysis of the membrane height correlation spectrum shows an influence of the protein-membrane interaction causing a distinctly altered wave-vector dependence compared to a free membrane. Furthermore, the time correlations exhibit the two relevant time scales of the system: that of membrane fluctuations and that of lateral protein diffusion with the latter typically much longer than the former. We argue that the analysis of the long-time decay of membrane height correlations can thus provide a new means to determine the effective diffusion coefficient of proteins in the membrane.

  6. Integrated system for extraction, purification, and digestion of membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yiying; Yan, Guoquan; Gao, Mingxia; Deng, Chunhui; Zhang, Xiangmin

    2016-05-01

    An integrated system was developed for directly processing living cells into peptides of membrane proteins. Living cells were directly injected into the system and cracked in a capillary column by ultrasonic treatment. Owing to hydrophilicity for broken pieces of the cell membrane, the obtained membranes were retained in a well-designed bi-filter. While cytoplasm proteins were eluted from the bi-filter, the membranes were dissolved and protein released by flushing 4 % SDS buffer through the bi-filter. The membrane proteins were subsequently transferred into a micro-reactor and covalently bound in the reactor for purification and digestion. As the system greatly simplified the whole pretreatment processes and minimized both sample loss and contamination, it could be used to analyze the membrane proteome samples of thousand-cell-scales with acceptable reliability and stability. We totally identified 1348 proteins from 5000 HepG2 cells, 615 of which were annotated as membrane proteins. In contrast, with conventional method, only 233 membrane proteins were identified. It is adequately demonstrated that the integrated system shows promising practicability for the membrane proteome analysis of small amount of cells. Graphical Abstract The legend of online abstract figure is (a) schematic illustration of membrane proteins extraction, purification and digestion from living cells; (b) diagrammatic sketch of the automatic integrated membrane proteome analysis system. PMID:26922343

  7. Adaptable Lipid Matrix Promotes Protein-Protein Association in Membranes.

    PubMed

    Kuznetsov, Andrey S; Polyansky, Anton A; Fleck, Markus; Volynsky, Pavel E; Efremov, Roman G

    2015-09-01

    The cell membrane is "stuffed" with proteins, whose transmembrane (TM) helical domains spontaneously associate to form functionally active complexes. For a number of membrane receptors, a modulation of TM domains' oligomerization has been shown to contribute to the development of severe pathological states, thus calling for detailed studies of the atomistic aspects of the process. Despite considerable progress achieved so far, several crucial questions still remain: How do the helices recognize each other in the membrane? What is the driving force of their association? Here, we assess the dimerization free energy of TM helices along with a careful consideration of the interplay between the structure and dynamics of protein and lipids using atomistic molecular dynamics simulations in the hydrated lipid bilayer for three different model systems - TM fragments of glycophorin A, polyalanine and polyleucine peptides. We observe that the membrane driven association of TM helices exhibits a prominent entropic character, which depends on the peptide sequence. Thus, a single TM peptide of a given composition induces strong and characteristic perturbations in the hydrophobic core of the bilayer, which may facilitate the initial "communication" between TM helices even at the distances of 20-30 Å. Upon tight helix-helix association, the immobilized lipids accommodate near the peripheral surfaces of the dimer, thus disturbing the packing of the surrounding. The dimerization free energy of the modeled peptides corresponds to the strength of their interactions with lipids inside the membrane being the lowest for glycophorin A and similarly higher for both homopolymers. We propose that the ability to accommodate lipid tails determines the dimerization strength of TM peptides and that the lipid matrix directly governs their association. PMID:26575933

  8. Extracellular Protease Digestion to Evaluate Membrane Protein Cell Surface Localization

    PubMed Central

    Besingi, Richard N.; Clark, Patricia L.

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins play crucial roles in signaling and as anchors for cell surface display. Proper secretion of a membrane protein can be evaluated by its susceptibility to digestion by an extracellular protease, but this requires a crucial control to confirm membrane integrity during digestion. This protocol describes how to use this approach to determine how efficiently a protein is secreted to the outer surface of Gram-negative bacteria. Its success relies upon careful selection of an appropriate intracellular reporter protein that will remain undigested if the membrane barrier remains intact, but is rapidly digested when cells are lysed prior to evaluation. Reporter proteins that are resistant to proteases (e.g. maltose-binding protein) do not return accurate results; in contrast, proteins that are more readily digested (e.g. SurA) serve as more sensitive reporters of membrane integrity, yielding more accurate measurements of membrane protein localization. Similar considerations apply when evaluating membrane protein localization in other contexts, including eukaryotic cells and organelle membranes. Evaluating membrane protein localization using this approach requires only standard biochemistry laboratory equipment for cell lysis, gel electrophoresis and western blotting. After expression of the protein of interest, this procedure can be completed in 4 h. PMID:26584447

  9. Fluctuating hydrodynamics of multicomponent membranes with embedded proteins

    SciTech Connect

    Camley, Brian A.; Brown, Frank L. H.

    2014-08-21

    A simulation method for the dynamics of inhomogeneous lipid bilayer membranes is presented. The membrane is treated using stochastic Saffman-Delbrück hydrodynamics, coupled to a phase-field description of lipid composition and discrete membrane proteins. Multiple applications are considered to validate and parameterize the model. The dynamics of membrane composition fluctuations above the critical point and phase separation dynamics below the critical point are studied in some detail, including the effects of adding proteins to the mixture.

  10. Jumping mode atomic force microscopy on grana membranes from spinach.

    PubMed

    Sznee, Kinga; Dekker, Jan P; Dame, Remus T; van Roon, Henny; Wuite, Gijs J L; Frese, Raoul N

    2011-11-11

    The thylakoid membrane system is a complex membrane system that organizes and reorganizes itself to provide plants optimal chemical energy from sunlight under different and varying environmental conditions. Grana membranes are part of this system and contain the light-driven water-splitting enzyme Photosystem II (PSII) and light-harvesting antenna complexes. Here, we present a direct visualization of PSII complexes within grana membranes from spinach. By means of jumping mode atomic force microscopy in liquid, minimal forces were applied between the scanning tip and membrane or protein, allowing complexes to be imaged with high detail. We observed four different packing arrangements of PSII complexes, which occur primarily as dimers: co-linear crystalline rows, nanometric domains of straight or skewed rows, and disordered domains. Upon storing surface-adhered membranes at low temperature prior to imaging, large-scale reorganizations of supercomplexes between PSII and light-harvesting complex II could be induced. The highest resolution images show the existence of membrane domains without obvious topography extending beyond supercomplexes. These observations illustrate the possibility for diffusion of proteins and smaller molecules within these densely packed membranes. PMID:21911498

  11. Dark States in the Light-Harvesting complex 2 Revealed by Two-dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Ferretti, Marco; Hendrikx, Ruud; Romero, Elisabet; Southall, June; Cogdell, Richard J; Novoderezhkin, Vladimir I; Scholes, Gregory D; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-01-01

    Energy transfer and trapping in the light harvesting antennae of purple photosynthetic bacteria is an ultrafast process, which occurs with a quantum efficiency close to unity. However the mechanisms behind this process have not yet been fully understood. Recently it was proposed that low-lying energy dark states, such as charge transfer states and polaron pairs, play an important role in the dynamics and directionality of energy transfer. However, it is difficult to directly detect those states because of their small transition dipole moment and overlap with the B850/B870 exciton bands. Here we present a new experimental approach, which combines the selectivity of two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with the availability of genetically modified light harvesting complexes, to reveal the presence of those dark states in both the genetically modified and the wild-type light harvesting 2 complexes of Rhodopseudomonas palustris. We suggest that Nature has used the unavoidable charge transfer processes that occur when LH pigments are concentrated to enhance and direct the flow of energy. PMID:26857477

  12. Dark States in the Light-Harvesting complex 2 Revealed by Two-dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferretti, Marco; Hendrikx, Ruud; Romero, Elisabet; Southall, June; Cogdell, Richard J.; Novoderezhkin, Vladimir I.; Scholes, Gregory D.; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-02-01

    Energy transfer and trapping in the light harvesting antennae of purple photosynthetic bacteria is an ultrafast process, which occurs with a quantum efficiency close to unity. However the mechanisms behind this process have not yet been fully understood. Recently it was proposed that low-lying energy dark states, such as charge transfer states and polaron pairs, play an important role in the dynamics and directionality of energy transfer. However, it is difficult to directly detect those states because of their small transition dipole moment and overlap with the B850/B870 exciton bands. Here we present a new experimental approach, which combines the selectivity of two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with the availability of genetically modified light harvesting complexes, to reveal the presence of those dark states in both the genetically modified and the wild-type light harvesting 2 complexes of Rhodopseudomonas palustris. We suggest that Nature has used the unavoidable charge transfer processes that occur when LH pigments are concentrated to enhance and direct the flow of energy.

  13. Light harvesting in photonic crystals revisited: why do slow photons at the blue edge enhance absorption?

    PubMed

    Deparis, O; Mouchet, S R; Su, B-L

    2015-11-11

    Light harvesting enhancement by slow photons in photonic crystal catalysts or dye-sensitized solar cells is a promising approach for increasing the efficiency of photoreactions. This structural effect is exploited in inverse opal TiO2 photocatalysts by tuning the red edge of the photonic band gap to the TiO2 electronic excitation band edge. In spite of many experimental demonstrations, the slow photon effect is not fully understood yet. In particular, observed enhancement by tuning the blue edge has remained unexplained. Based on rigorous couple wave analysis simulations, we quantify light harvesting enhancement in terms of absorption increase at a specific wavelength (monochromatic UV illumination) or photocurrent increase (solar light illumination), with respect to homogeneous flat slab of equivalent material thickness. We show that the commonly accepted explanation relying on light intensity confinement in high (low) dielectric constant regions at the red (blue) edge is challenged in the case of TiO2 inverse opals because of the sub-wavelength size of the material skeleton. The reason why slow photons at the blue edge are also able to enhance light harvesting is the loose confinement of the field, which leads to significant resonantly enhanced field intensity overlap with the skeleton in both red and blue edge tuning cases, yet with different intensity patterns. PMID:26517229

  14. Directed assembly of hierarchical light-harvesting complexes using virus capsid scaffolds and DNA origami tiles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Debin; Capehart, Stacy; Pal, Suchetan; Liu, Minghui; Lau, Jolene; Yan, Hao; Francis, Matthew; Deyoreo, Jim; LBNL Team; UCB Team; ASU Team

    2013-03-01

    Directed assembly of nanostructures with molecular precision is of great importance to develop an insightful understanding of assembly pathways and dynamics as well as to derive new functionalities. In this work, we explore the use of virus capsids and DNA origami tiles as 3D scaffolds and 2D templates for directed assembly of light-harvesting molecules and plasmonic gold nanoparticles to achieve tunable photoemission. Bacteriophage MS2 virus capsids with well-defined spherical macromolecular structures are genetically modified to provide predictable steric arrangements of light-harvesting molecules. DNA origami tiles act as programmable planar templates to provide higher-order organization of oligonucleotide-functionalized light-harvesting capsids and plasmonic gold nanoparticles. The direct observation of distance dependent photoluminescence emission is carried out by our correlative approach combining atomic force microscopy and confocal fluorescence microscopy, which is in good agreement with our numerical simulation and theoretical calculation. This work will facilitate the construction of multicomponent biological-metal hybrid plasmonic nanostructures for nanophotonics and biosensing applications.

  15. Dark States in the Light-Harvesting complex 2 Revealed by Two-dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy

    DOE PAGESBeta

    Ferretti, Marco; Hendrikx, Ruud; Romero, Elisabet; Southall, June; Cogdell, Richard J.; Novoderezhkin, Vladimir I.; Scholes, Gregory D.; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-02-09

    Energy transfer and trapping in the light harvesting antennae of purple photosynthetic bacteria is an ultrafast process, which occurs with a quantum efficiency close to unity. However the mechanisms behind this process have not yet been fully understood. Recently it was proposed that low-lying energy dark states, such as charge transfer states and polaron pairs, play an important role in the dynamics and directionality of energy transfer. However, it is difficult to directly detect those states because of their small transition dipole moment and overlap with the B850/B870 exciton bands. Here we present a new experimental approach, which combines themore » selectivity of two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with the availability of genetically modified light harvesting complexes, to reveal the presence of those dark states in both the genetically modified and the wild-type light harvesting 2 complexes of Rhodopseudomonas palustris. In conclusion, we suggest that Nature has used the unavoidable charge transfer processes that occur when LH pigments are concentrated to enhance and direct the flow of energy.« less

  16. Dark States in the Light-Harvesting complex 2 Revealed by Two-dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Ferretti, Marco; Hendrikx, Ruud; Romero, Elisabet; Southall, June; Cogdell, Richard J.; Novoderezhkin, Vladimir I.; Scholes, Gregory D.; van Grondelle, Rienk

    2016-01-01

    Energy transfer and trapping in the light harvesting antennae of purple photosynthetic bacteria is an ultrafast process, which occurs with a quantum efficiency close to unity. However the mechanisms behind this process have not yet been fully understood. Recently it was proposed that low-lying energy dark states, such as charge transfer states and polaron pairs, play an important role in the dynamics and directionality of energy transfer. However, it is difficult to directly detect those states because of their small transition dipole moment and overlap with the B850/B870 exciton bands. Here we present a new experimental approach, which combines the selectivity of two-dimensional electronic spectroscopy with the availability of genetically modified light harvesting complexes, to reveal the presence of those dark states in both the genetically modified and the wild-type light harvesting 2 complexes of Rhodopseudomonas palustris. We suggest that Nature has used the unavoidable charge transfer processes that occur when LH pigments are concentrated to enhance and direct the flow of energy. PMID:26857477

  17. Synthesis of perylene-porphyrin building blocks and polymers thereof for the production of light-harvesting arrays

    DOEpatents

    Loewe, Robert S.; Tomizaki, Kin-ya; Lindsey, Jonathan S.

    2005-07-12

    The present invention provides methods, compounds, and compositions for the synthesis of light harvesting arrays, such arrays comprising: (a) a first substrate comprising a first electrode; and (b) a layer of light harvesting rods electrically coupled to said first electrode, each of said light harvesting rods comprising a polymer of Formula I: wherein m is at least 1; X.sup.1 is a charge separation group, and X.sup.2 through X.sup.m+1 are chromophores. At least one of X.sup.2 through X.sup.m+1 has at least one perylene group coupled thereto.

  18. Dynamic nuclear polarization of membrane proteins: covalently bound spin-labels at protein-protein interfaces.

    PubMed

    Wylie, Benjamin J; Dzikovski, Boris G; Pawsey, Shane; Caporini, Marc; Rosay, Melanie; Freed, Jack H; McDermott, Ann E

    2015-04-01

    We demonstrate that dynamic nuclear polarization of membrane proteins in lipid bilayers may be achieved using a novel polarizing agent: pairs of spin labels covalently bound to a protein of interest interacting at an intermolecular interaction surface. For gramicidin A, nitroxide tags attached to the N-terminal intermolecular interface region become proximal only when bimolecular channels forms in the membrane. We obtained signal enhancements of sixfold for the dimeric protein. The enhancement effect was comparable to that of a doubly tagged sample of gramicidin C, with intramolecular spin pairs. This approach could be a powerful and selective means for signal enhancement in membrane proteins, and for recognizing intermolecular interfaces. PMID:25828256

  19. Study of polytopic membrane protein topological organization as a function of membrane lipid composition.

    PubMed

    Bogdanov, Mikhail; Heacock, Philip N; Dowhan, William

    2010-01-01

    A protocol is described using lipid mutants and thiol-specific chemical reagents to study lipid-dependent and host-specific membrane protein topogenesis by the substituted-cysteine accessibility method as applied to transmembrane domains (SCAM). SCAM is adapted to follow changes in membrane protein topology as a function of changes in membrane lipid composition. The strategy described can be adapted to any membrane system. PMID:20419405

  20. Low-temperature time-resolved spectroscopic study of the major light-harvesting complex of Amphidinium carterae.

    PubMed

    Slouf, Václav; Fuciman, Marcel; Johanning, Silke; Hofmann, Eckhard; Frank, Harry A; Polívka, Tomáš

    2013-11-01

    The major light-harvesting complex of Amphidinium (A.) carterae, chlorophyll-a-chlorophyll-c 2-peridinin-protein complex (acpPC), was studied using ultrafast pump-probe spectroscopy at low temperature (60 K). An efficient peridinin-chlorophyll-a energy transfer was observed. The stimulated emission signal monitored in the near-infrared spectral region was stronger when redder part of peridinin pool was excited, indicating that these peridinins have the S1/ICT (intramolecular charge-transfer) state with significant charge-transfer character. This may lead to enhanced energy transfer efficiency from "red" peridinins to chlorophyll-a. Contrary to the water-soluble antenna of A. carterae, peridinin-chlorophyll-a protein, the energy transfer rates in acpPC were slower under low-temperature conditions. This fact underscores the influence of the protein environment on the excited-state dynamics of pigments and/or the specificity of organization of the two pigment-protein complexes. PMID:23904192

  1. Structure Determination of Membrane Proteins by Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Opella, Stanley J.

    2014-01-01

    Many biological membranes consist of 50% or more (by weight) membrane proteins, which constitute approximately one-third of all proteins expressed in biological organisms. Helical membrane proteins function as receptors, enzymes, and transporters, among other unique cellular roles. Additionally, most drugs have membrane proteins as their receptors, notably the superfamily of G protein–coupled receptors with seven transmembrane helices. Determining the structures of membrane proteins is a daunting task because of the effects of the membrane environment; specifically, it has been difficult to combine biologically compatible environments with the requirements for the established methods of structure determination. There is strong motivation to determine the structures in their native phospholipid bilayer environment so that perturbations from nonnatural lipids and phases do not have to be taken into account. At present, the only method that can work with proteins in liquid crystalline phospholipid bilayers is solid-state NMR spectroscopy. PMID:23577669

  2. Membrane-Mediated Interaction between Strongly Anisotropic Protein Scaffolds

    PubMed Central

    Schweitzer, Yonatan; Kozlov, Michael M.

    2015-01-01

    Specialized proteins serve as scaffolds sculpting strongly curved membranes of intracellular organelles. Effective membrane shaping requires segregation of these proteins into domains and is, therefore, critically dependent on the protein-protein interaction. Interactions mediated by membrane elastic deformations have been extensively analyzed within approximations of large inter-protein distances, small extents of the protein-mediated membrane bending and small deviations of the protein shapes from isotropic spherical segments. At the same time, important classes of the realistic membrane-shaping proteins have strongly elongated shapes with large and highly anisotropic curvature. Here we investigated, computationally, the membrane mediated interaction between proteins or protein oligomers representing membrane scaffolds with strongly anisotropic curvature, and addressed, quantitatively, a specific case of the scaffold geometrical parameters characterizing BAR domains, which are crucial for membrane shaping in endocytosis. In addition to the previously analyzed contributions to the interaction, we considered a repulsive force stemming from the entropy of the scaffold orientation. We computed this interaction to be of the same order of magnitude as the well-known attractive force related to the entropy of membrane undulations. We demonstrated the scaffold shape anisotropy to cause a mutual aligning of the scaffolds and to generate a strong attractive interaction bringing the scaffolds close to each other to equilibrium distances much smaller than the scaffold size. We computed the energy of interaction between scaffolds of a realistic geometry to constitute tens of kBT, which guarantees a robust segregation of the scaffolds into domains. PMID:25710602

  3. A novel lipoprotein nanoparticle system for membrane proteins

    PubMed Central

    Frauenfeld, Jens; Löving, Robin; Armache, Jean-Paul; Sonnen, Andreas; Guettou, Fatma; Moberg, Per; Zhu, Lin; Jegerschöld, Caroline; Flayhan, Ali; Briggs, John A.G.; Garoff, Henrik; Löw, Christian; Cheng, Yifan; Nordlund, Pär

    2016-01-01

    Membrane proteins are of outstanding importance in biology, drug discovery and vaccination. A common limiting factor in research and applications involving membrane proteins is the ability to solubilize and stabilize membrane proteins. Although detergents represent the major means for solubilizing membrane proteins, they are often associated with protein instability and poor applicability in structural and biophysical studies. Here, we present a novel lipoprotein nanoparticle system that allows for the reconstitution of membrane proteins into a lipid environment that is stabilized by a scaffold of Saposin proteins. We showcase the applicability of the method on two purified membrane protein complexes as well as the direct solubilization and nanoparticle-incorporation of a viral membrane protein complex from the virus membrane. We also demonstrate that this lipid nanoparticle methodology facilitates high-resolution structural studies of membrane proteins in a lipid environment by single-particle electron cryo-microscopy (cryo-EM) and allows for the stabilization of the HIV-envelope glycoprotein in a functional state. PMID:26950744

  4. Bio-Photoelectrochemical Solar Cells Incorporating Reaction Center and Reaction Center Plus Light Harvesting Complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yaghoubi, Houman

    onto Au electrodes via surface exposed cysteine residues. This resulted in photocurrent densities as large as ~600 nA cm-2 while still the incident photon to generated electron quantum efficiency was as low as %3 x 10-4. 2- The second approach is to immobilize wild type RCs of Rhodobacter sphaeroides on the surface of a Au underlying electrode using self-assembled monolayers of carboxylic acid terminated oligomers and cytochrome c charge mediating layers, with a preferential orientation from the primary electron donor site. This approach resulted in EQE of up to 0.06%, which showed 200 times efficiency improvement comparing to the first approach. In the third approach, instead of isolated protein complexes, RCs plus light harvesting (LH) complexes were employed for a better photon absorption. Direct attachment of RC-LH1 complexes on Au working electrodes, resulted in 0.21% EQE which showed 3.5 times efficiency improvement over the second approach (700 times higher than the first approach). The main impact of this work is the harnessing of biological RCs for efficient energy harvesting in man-made structures. Specifically, the results in this work will advance the application of RCs in devices for energy harvesting and will enable a better understanding of bio and nanomaterial interfaces, thereby advancing the application of biological materials in electronic devices. At the end, this work offers general guidelines that can serve to improve the performance of bio-hybrid solar cells.

  5. Protein-Induced Modulation of Chloroplast Membrane Morphology

    PubMed Central

    Machettira, Anu B.; Groß, Lucia E.; Tillmann, Bodo; Weis, Benjamin L.; Englich, Gisela; Sommer, Maik S.; Königer, Martina; Schleiff, Enrico

    2012-01-01

    Organelles are surrounded by membranes with a distinct lipid and protein composition. While it is well established that lipids affect protein functioning and vice versa, it has been only recently suggested that elevated membrane protein concentrations may affect the shape and organization of membranes. We therefore analyzed the effects of high chloroplast envelope protein concentrations on membrane structures using an in vivo approach with protoplasts. Transient expression of outer envelope proteins or protein domains such as CHUP1-TM–GFP, outer envelope protein of 7 kDa–GFP, or outer envelope protein of 24 kDa–GFP at high levels led to the formation of punctate, circular, and tubular membrane protrusions. Expression of inner membrane proteins such as translocase of inner chloroplast membrane 20, isoform II (Tic20-II)–GFP led to membrane protrusions including invaginations. Using increasing amounts of DNA for transfection, we could show that the frequency, size, and intensity of these protrusions increased with protein concentration. The membrane deformations were absent after cycloheximide treatment. Co-expression of CHUP1-TM–Cherry and Tic20-II–GFP led to membrane protrusions of various shapes and sizes including some stromule-like structures, for which several functions have been proposed. Interestingly, some structures seemed to contain both proteins, while others seem to contain one protein exclusively, indicating that outer and inner envelope dynamics might be regulated independently. While it was more difficult to investigate the effects of high expression levels of membrane proteins on mitochondrial membrane shapes using confocal imaging, it was striking that the expression of the outer membrane protein Tom20 led to more elongate mitochondria. We discuss that the effect of protein concentrations on membrane structure is possibly caused by an imbalance in the lipid to protein ratio and may be involved in a signaling pathway regulating membrane

  6. An Integrated Framework Advancing Membrane Protein Modeling and Design

    PubMed Central

    Weitzner, Brian D.; Duran, Amanda M.; Tilley, Drew C.; Elazar, Assaf; Gray, Jeffrey J.

    2015-01-01

    Membrane proteins are critical functional molecules in the human body, constituting more than 30% of open reading frames in the human genome. Unfortunately, a myriad of difficulties in overexpression and reconstitution into membrane mimetics severely limit our ability to determine their structures. Computational tools are therefore instrumental to membrane protein structure prediction, consequently increasing our understanding of membrane protein function and their role in disease. Here, we describe a general framework facilitating membrane protein modeling and design that combines the scientific principles for membrane protein modeling with the flexible software architecture of Rosetta3. This new framework, called RosettaMP, provides a general membrane representation that interfaces with scoring, conformational sampling, and mutation routines that can be easily combined to create new protocols. To demonstrate the capabilities of this implementation, we developed four proof-of-concept applications for (1) prediction of free energy changes upon mutation; (2) high-resolution structural refinement; (3) protein-protein docking; and (4) assembly of symmetric protein complexes, all in the membrane environment. Preliminary data show that these algorithms can produce meaningful scores and structures. The data also suggest needed improvements to both sampling routines and score functions. Importantly, the applications collectively demonstrate the potential of combining the flexible nature of RosettaMP with the power of Rosetta algorithms to facilitate membrane protein modeling and design. PMID:26325167

  7. An Integrated Framework Advancing Membrane Protein Modeling and Design.

    PubMed

    Alford, Rebecca F; Koehler Leman, Julia; Weitzner, Brian D; Duran, Amanda M; Tilley, Drew C; Elazar, Assaf; Gray, Jeffrey J

    2015-09-01

    Membrane proteins are critical functional molecules in the human body, constituting more than 30% of open reading frames in the human genome. Unfortunately, a myriad of difficulties in overexpression and reconstitution into membrane mimetics severely limit our ability to determine their structures. Computational tools are therefore instrumental to membrane protein structure prediction, consequently increasing our understanding of membrane protein function and their role in disease. Here, we describe a general framework facilitating membrane protein modeling and design that combines the scientific principles for membrane protein modeling with the flexible software architecture of Rosetta3. This new framework, called RosettaMP, provides a general membrane representation that interfaces with scoring, conformational sampling, and mutation routines that can be easily combined to create new protocols. To demonstrate the capabilities of this implementation, we developed four proof-of-concept applications for (1) prediction of free energy changes upon mutation; (2) high-resolution structural refinement; (3) protein-protein docking; and (4) assembly of symmetric protein complexes, all in the membrane environment. Preliminary data show that these algorithms can produce meaningful scores and structures. The data also suggest needed improvements to both sampling routines and score functions. Importantly, the applications collectively demonstrate the potential of combining the flexible nature of RosettaMP with the power of Rosetta algorithms to facilitate membrane protein modeling and design. PMID:26325167

  8. Sampling the membrane: function of rhomboid-family proteins.

    PubMed

    Lemberg, Marius K

    2013-05-01

    Rhomboids constitute a conserved protein superfamily that specifically binds membrane proteins and directs them into various different cellular pathways ranging from regulated secretion to endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-associated degradation (ERAD). Rhomboid proteases are known to release protein domains from membranes by a cut in their membrane anchor, whereas an emerging new class of rhomboid-family proteins lacks key catalytic residues and is not proteolytically active. Recent work has shown that these rhomboid pseudoproteases, including iRhoms and derlins, bind membrane proteins to regulate their fate, but the underlying molecular mechanism is not known. This review summarizes recent advances in the molecular understanding of rhomboid-family proteins and discusses common principles in how they recognize and bind proteins in the plane of the membrane. PMID:23369641

  9. A topological and conformational stability alphabet for multipass membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Feng, Xiang; Barth, Patrick

    2016-03-01

    Multipass membrane proteins perform critical signal transduction and transport across membranes. How transmembrane helix (TMH) sequences encode the topology and conformational flexibility regulating these functions remains poorly understood. Here we describe a comprehensive analysis of the sequence-structure relationships at multiple interacting TMHs from all membrane proteins with structures in the Protein Data Bank (PDB). We found that membrane proteins can be deconstructed in interacting TMH trimer units, which mostly fold into six distinct structural classes of topologies and conformations. Each class is enriched in recurrent sequence motifs from functionally unrelated proteins, revealing unforeseen consensus and evolutionary conserved networks of stabilizing interhelical contacts. Interacting TMHs' topology and local protein conformational flexibility were remarkably well predicted in a blinded fashion from the identified binding-hotspot motifs. Our results reveal universal sequence-structure principles governing the complex anatomy and plasticity of multipass membrane proteins that may guide de novo structure prediction, design, and studies of folding and dynamics. PMID:26780406

  10. Intrinsic membrane association of Drosophila cysteine string proteins.

    PubMed

    Mastrogiacomo, A; Kohan, S A; Whitelegge, J P; Gundersen, C B

    1998-09-25

    Cysteine string proteins (csps) are highly conserved constituents of vertebrate and invertebrate secretory organelles. Biochemical and immunoprecipitation experiments implied that vertebrate csps were integral membrane proteins that were tethered to the outer leaflet of secretory vesicles via the fatty acyl residues of their extensively acylated cysteine string. Independently, work of others suggested that Drosophila csps were peripheral membrane proteins that were anchored to membranes by a mechanism that was independent of the cysteine string and its fatty acyl residues. We extended these investigation and found first that sodium carbonate treatment partially stripped both csps and the integral membrane protein, synaptotagmin, from Drosophila membranes. Concomitantly, carbonate released fatty acids into the medium, arguing that it has a mild, solubilizing effect on these membranes. Second, we observed that Drosophila csps behaved like integral membrane proteins in Triton X-114 partitioning experiments. Third, we found that when membrane-bound csps were deacylated, they remained membrane bound. Moreover, it appeared that hydrophobic interactions were necessary for this persistent membrane association of csps. Thus, neither reducing conditions, urea, nor chaotropic agents displaced deacylated csps from membranes. Only detergents were effective in solubilizing deacylated csps. Finally, by virtue of the inaccessibility of deacylated csps to thiol alkylation by the membrane-impermeant alkylating reagent, iodoacetic acid, we inferred that it was the cysteine string domain that mediated the membrane association of deacylated csps. Thus, we conclude that under physiological conditions csps are integral membrane proteins of secretory organelles, and that the cysteine string domain plays a vital role in the membrane association of these proteins. PMID:9771899

  11. Reversible Switching between Nonquenched and Quenched States in Nanoscale Linear Arrays of Plant Light-Harvesting Antenna Complexes

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    A simple and robust nanolithographic method that allows sub-100 nm chemical patterning on a range of oxide surfaces was developed in order to fabricate nanoarrays of plant light-harvesting LHCII complexes. The site-specific immobilization and the preserved functionality of the LHCII complexes were confirmed by fluorescence emission spectroscopy. Nanopatterned LHCII trimers could be reversibly switched between fluorescent and quenched states by controlling the detergent concentration in the imaging buffer. A 3-fold quenching of the average fluorescence intensity was accompanied by a decrease in the average (amplitude-weighted) fluorescence lifetime from approximately 2.24 ns to approximately 0.4 ns, attributed to the intrinsic ability of LHCII to switch between fluorescent and quenched states upon changes in its conformational state. The nanopatterning methodology was extended by immobilizing a second protein, the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP), onto LHCII-free areas of the chemically patterned surfaces. This very simple surface chemistry, which allows simultaneous selective immobilization and therefore sorting of the two types of protein molecules on the surface, is a key underpinning step toward the integration of LHCII into switchable biohybrid antenna constructs. PMID:24988144

  12. The Use of Detergents to Purify Membrane Proteins.

    PubMed

    Orwick-Rydmark, Marcella; Arnold, Thomas; Linke, Dirk

    2016-01-01

    Extraction of membrane proteins from biological membranes is usually accomplished with the help of detergents. This unit describes the use of detergents to solubilize and purify membrane proteins. The chemical and physical properties of the different classes of detergents typically used with biological samples are discussed. A separate section addresses the compatibility of detergents with applications downstream of the membrane protein purification process, such as optical spectroscopy, mass spectrometry, protein crystallography, biomolecular NMR, or electron microscopy. A brief summary of alternative membrane protein solubilizing and stabilizing systems is also included. Protocols in this unit include the isolation and solubilization of biological membranes and phase separation; support protocols for detergent removal, detergent exchange, and the determination of critical micelle concentration using different methods are also included. PMID:27038269

  13. Bilayer-thickness-mediated interactions between integral membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Kahraman, Osman; Koch, Peter D; Klug, William S; Haselwandter, Christoph A

    2016-04-01

    Hydrophobic thickness mismatch between integral membrane proteins and the surrounding lipid bilayer can produce lipid bilayer thickness deformations. Experiment and theory have shown that protein-induced lipid bilayer thickness deformations can yield energetically favorable bilayer-mediated interactions between integral membrane proteins, and large-scale organization of integral membrane proteins into protein clusters in cell membranes. Within the continuum elasticity theory of membranes, the energy cost of protein-induced bilayer thickness deformations can be captured by considering compression and expansion of the bilayer hydrophobic core, membrane tension, and bilayer bending, resulting in biharmonic equilibrium equations describing the shape of lipid bilayers for a given set of bilayer-protein boundary conditions. Here we develop a combined analytic and numerical methodology for the solution of the equilibrium elastic equations associated with protein-induced lipid bilayer deformations. Our methodology allows accurate prediction of thickness-mediated protein interactions for arbitrary protein symmetries at arbitrary protein separations and relative orientations. We provide exact analytic solutions for cylindrical integral membrane proteins with constant and varying hydrophobic thickness, and develop perturbative analytic solutions for noncylindrical protein shapes. We complement these analytic solutions, and assess their accuracy, by developing both finite element and finite difference numerical solution schemes. We provide error estimates of our numerical solution schemes and systematically assess their convergence properties. Taken together, the work presented here puts into place an analytic and numerical framework which allows calculation of bilayer-mediated elastic interactions between integral membrane proteins for the complicated protein shapes suggested by structural biology and at the small protein separations most relevant for the crowded membrane

  14. Bilayer-thickness-mediated interactions between integral membrane proteins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kahraman, Osman; Koch, Peter D.; Klug, William S.; Haselwandter, Christoph A.

    2016-04-01

    Hydrophobic thickness mismatch between integral membrane proteins and the surrounding lipid bilayer can produce lipid bilayer thickness deformations. Experiment and theory have shown that protein-induced lipid bilayer thickness deformations can yield energetically favorable bilayer-mediated interactions between integral membrane proteins, and large-scale organization of integral membrane proteins into protein clusters in cell membranes. Within the continuum elasticity theory of membranes, the energy cost of protein-induced bilayer thickness deformations can be captured by considering compression and expansion of the bilayer hydrophobic core, membrane tension, and bilayer bending, resulting in biharmonic equilibrium equations describing the shape of lipid bilayers for a given set of bilayer-protein boundary conditions. Here we develop a combined analytic and numerical methodology for the solution of the equilibrium elastic equations associated with protein-induced lipid bilayer deformations. Our methodology allows accurate prediction of thickness-mediated protein interactions for arbitrary protein symmetries at arbitrary protein separations and relative orientations. We provide exact analytic solutions for cylindrical integral membrane proteins with constant and varying hydrophobic thickness, and develop perturbative analytic solutions for noncylindrical protein shapes. We complement these analytic solutions, and assess their accuracy, by developing both finite element and finite difference numerical solution schemes. We provide error estimates of our numerical solution schemes and systematically assess their convergence properties. Taken together, the work presented here puts into place an analytic and numerical framework which allows calculation of bilayer-mediated elastic interactions between integral membrane proteins for the complicated protein shapes suggested by structural biology and at the small protein separations most relevant for the crowded membrane

  15. Tetra Detector Analysis of Membrane Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Robbins, Rebecca A.; Stroud, Robert M.

    2014-01-01

    Well-characterized membrane protein detergent complexes (PDC) that are pure, homogenous and stable with minimized excess detergent micelles are essential for functional assays and crystallization studies. Procedural steps to measure the mass, size, shape, homogeneity and molecular composition of PDCs and their host detergent micelle using size exclusion chromatography (SEC) with a Viscotek tetra detector array (TDA; absorbance, refractive index, light scattering and viscosity detectors) are presented. The value of starting with a quality PDC sample, the precision and accuracy of the results, and the use of a digital bench top refractometer are emphasized. An alternate and simplified purification and characterization approach using SEC with dual absorbance and refractive index detectors to optimize detergent and lipid concentration while measuring the PDC homogeneity are also described. Applications relative to purification and characterization goals are illustrated as well. PMID:25081744

  16. Detergent-Specific Membrane Protein Crystallization Screens

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wiener, Michael

    2007-01-01

    A suite of reagents has been developed for three-dimensional crystallization of integral membranes present in solution as protein-detergent complexes (PDCs). The compositions of these reagents have been determined in part by proximity to the phase boundaries (lower consolute boundaries) of the detergents present in the PDCs. The acquisition of some of the requisite phase-boundary data and the preliminary design of several of the detergent- specific screens was supported by a NASA contract. At the time of expiration of the contract, a partial set of preliminary screens had been developed. This work has since been extended under non-NASA sponsorship, leading to near completion of a set of 20 to 30 different and unique detergent- specific 96-condition screens.

  17. Hierarchical organization and structural flexibility of thylakoid membranes.

    PubMed

    Garab, Győző

    2014-04-01

    Chloroplast thylakoid membranes accommodate densely packed protein complexes in ordered, often semi-crystalline arrays and are assembled into highly organized multilamellar systems, an organization warranting a substantial degree of stability. At the same time, they exhibit remarkable structural flexibility, which appears to play important - yet not fully understood - roles in different short-term adaptation mechanisms in response to rapidly changing environmental conditions. In this review I will focus on dynamic features of the hierarchically organized photosynthetic machineries at different levels of structural complexity: (i) isolated light harvesting complexes, (ii) molecular macroassemblies and supercomplexes, (iii) thylakoid membranes and (iv) their multilamellar membrane systems. Special attention will be paid to the most abundant systems, the major light harvesting antenna complex, LHCII, and to grana. Two physical mechanisms, which are less frequently treated in the literature, will receive special attention: (i) thermo-optic mechanism -elementary structural changes elicited by ultrafast local heat transients due to the dissipation of photon energy, which operates both in isolated antenna assemblies and the native thylakoid membranes, regulates important enzymatic functions and appears to play role in light adaptation and photoprotection mechanisms; and (ii) the mechanism by which non-bilayer lipids and lipid phases play key role in the functioning of xanthophyll cycle de-epoxidases and are proposed to regulate the protein-to-lipid ratio in thylakoid membranes and contribute to membrane dynamics. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Dynamic and ultrastructure of bioenergetic membranes and their components. PMID:24333385

  18. The Regulation of Light Sensing and Light-Harvesting Impacts the Use of Cyanobacteria as Biotechnology Platforms.

    PubMed

    Montgomery, Beronda L

    2014-01-01

    Light is harvested in cyanobacteria by chlorophyll-containing photosystems embedded in the thylakoid membranes and phycobilisomes (PBSs), photosystem-associated light-harvesting antennae. Light absorbed by the PBSs and photosystems can be converted to chemical energy through photosynthesis. Photosynthetically fixed carbon pools, which are constrained by photosynthetic light capture versus the dissipation of excess light absorbed, determine the available organismal energy budget. The molecular bases of the environmental regulation of photosynthesis, photoprotection, and photomorphogenesis are still being elucidated in cyanobacteria. Thus, the potential impacts of these phenomena on the efficacy of developing cyanobacteria as robust biotechnological platforms require additional attention. Current advances and persisting needs for developing cyanobacterial production platforms that are related to light sensing and harvesting include the development of tools to balance the utilization of absorbed photons for conversion to chemical energy and biomass versus light dissipation in photoprotective mechanisms. Such tools can be used to direct energy to more effectively support the production of desired bioproducts from sunlight. PMID:25023122

  19. Phosphorylation of the Light-Harvesting Complex II Isoform Lhcb2 Is Central to State Transitions1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Cariti, Federica; Fucile, Geoffrey; Goldschmidt-Clermont, Michel

    2015-01-01

    Light-harvesting complex II (LHCII) is a crucial component of the photosynthetic machinery, with central roles in light capture and acclimation to changing light. The association of an LHCII trimer with PSI in the PSI-LHCII supercomplex is strictly dependent on LHCII phosphorylation mediated by the kinase STATE TRANSITION7, and is directly related to the light acclimation process called state transitions. In Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), the LHCII trimers contain isoforms that belong to three classes: Lhcb1, Lhcb2, and Lhcb3. Only Lhcb1 and Lhcb2 can be phosphorylated in the N-terminal region. Here, we present an improved Phos-tag-based method to determine the absolute extent of phosphorylation of Lhcb1 and Lhcb2. Both classes show very similar phosphorylation kinetics during state transition. Nevertheless, only Lhcb2 is extensively phosphorylated (>98%) in PSI-LHCII, whereas phosphorylated Lhcb1 is largely excluded from this supercomplex. Both isoforms are phosphorylated to different extents in other photosystem supercomplexes and in different domains of the thylakoid membranes. The data imply that, despite their high sequence similarity, differential phosphorylation of Lhcb1 and Lhcb2 plays contrasting roles in light acclimation of photosynthesis. PMID:26438789

  20. Towards Co-Evolution of Membrane Proteins and Metabolism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, Michael A.; Wei, Chenyu; Pohorille, Andrew

    2014-12-01

    Primordial metabolism co-evolved with the earliest membrane peptides to produce more environmentally fit progeny. Here, we map a continuous, evolutionary path that connects nascent biochemistry with simple, membrane-bound oligopeptides, ion channels and, further, membrane proteins capable of energy transduction and utilization of energy for active transport.

  1. Guided reconstitution of membrane protein fragments.

    PubMed

    Cohen, Leah S; Arshava, Boris; Kauffman, Sarah; Mathew, Elizabeth; Fracchiolla, Katrina E; Ding, Fa-Xiang; Dumont, Mark E; Becker, Jeffrey M; Naider, Fred

    2014-01-01

    Structural analysis by NMR of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) has proven to be extremely challenging. To reduce the number of peaks in the NMR spectra by segmentally labeling a GPCR, we have developed a Guided Reconstitution method that includes the use of charged residues and Cys activation to drive heterodimeric disulfide bond formation. Three different cysteine-activating reagents: 5-5'-dithiobis(2-nitrobenzoic acid) [DTNB], 2,2'-dithiobis(5-nitropyridine) [DTNP], and 4,4'-dipyridyl disulfide [4-PDS] were analyzed to determine their efficiency in heterodimer formation at different pHs. Short peptides representing the N-terminal (NT) and C-terminal (CT) regions of the first extracellular loop (EL1) of Ste2p, the Saccharomyces cerevisiae alpha-factor mating receptor, were activated using these reagents and the efficiencies of activation and rates of heterodimerization were analyzed. Activation of NT peptides with DTNP and 4-PDS resulted in about 60% yield, but heterodimerization was rapid and nearly quantitative. Double transmembrane domain protein fragments were biosynthesized and used in Guided Reconstitution reactions. A 102-residue fragment, 2TM-tail [Ste2p(G31-I120C)], was heterodimerized with CT-EL1-tail(DTNP) at pH 4.6 with a yield of ∼75%. A 132-residue fragment, 2TMlong-tail [Ste2p(M1-I120C)], was expressed in both unlabeled and (15)N-labeled forms and used with a peptide comprising the third transmembrane domain, to generate a 180-residue segmentally labeled 3TM protein that was found to be segmentally labeled using [(15)N,(1)H]-HSQC analysis. Our data indicate that the Guided Reconstitution method would be applicable to the segmental labeling of a membrane protein with 3 transmembrane domains and may prove useful in the preparation of an intact reconstituted GPCR for use in biophysical analysis and structure determination. PMID:23897574

  2. Expression strategies for structural studies of eukaryotic membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Lyons, Joseph A; Shahsavar, Azadeh; Paulsen, Peter Aasted; Pedersen, Bjørn Panyella; Nissen, Poul

    2016-06-01

    Integral membrane proteins in eukaryotes are central to various cellular processes and key targets in structural biology, biotechnology and drug development. However, the number of available structures for eukaryotic membrane protein belies their physiological importance. Recently, the number of available eukaryotic membrane protein structures has been steadily increasing due to the development of novel strategies in construct design, expression and structure determination. Here, we examine the major expression systems exploited for eukaryotic membrane proteins. Additionally we strive to tabulate and describe the recent expression strategies in eukaryotic membrane protein structural biology. We find that a majority of targets have been expressed in advanced host systems and modified from their wild-type form with distinct focus on conformation and thermostabilisation. However, strategies for native protein purification should also be considered where possible, particularly in light of the recent advances in single particle cryo electron microscopy. PMID:27362979

  3. Anomalous diffusion of proteins in sheared lipid membranes.

    PubMed

    Khoshnood, Atefeh; Jalali, Mir Abbas

    2013-09-01

    We use coarse grained molecular dynamics simulations to investigate diffusion properties of sheared lipid membranes with embedded transmembrane proteins. In membranes without proteins, we find normal in-plane diffusion of lipids in all flow conditions. Protein embedded membranes behave quite differently: by imposing a simple shear flow and sliding the monolayers of the membrane over each other, the motion of protein clusters becomes strongly superdiffusive in the shear direction. In such a circumstance, the subdiffusion regime is predominant perpendicular to the flow. We show that superdiffusion is a result of accelerated chaotic motions of protein-lipid complexes within the membrane voids, which are generated by hydrophobic mismatch or the transport of lipids by proteins. PMID:24125292

  4. Size-dependent protein segregation at membrane interfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmid, Eva M.; Bakalar, Matthew H.; Choudhuri, Kaushik; Weichsel, Julian; Ann, Hyoung Sook; Geissler, Phillip L.; Dustin, Michael L.; Fletcher, Daniel A.

    2016-07-01

    Membrane interfaces formed at cell-cell junctions are associated with characteristic patterns of membrane proteins whose organization is critical for intracellular signalling. To isolate the role of membrane protein size in pattern formation, we reconstituted model membrane interfaces in vitro using giant unilamellar vesicles decorated with synthetic binding and non-binding proteins. We show that size differences between membrane proteins can drastically alter their organization at membrane interfaces, with as little as a ~5 nm increase in non-binding protein size driving its exclusion from the interface. Combining in vitro measurements with Monte Carlo simulations, we find that non-binding protein exclusion is also influenced by lateral crowding, binding protein affinity, and thermally driven membrane height fluctuations that transiently limit access to the interface. This sensitive and highly effective means of physically segregating proteins has implications for cell-cell contacts such as T-cell immunological synapses (for example, CD45 exclusion) and epithelial cell junctions (for example, E-cadherin enrichment), as well as for protein sorting at intracellular contact points between membrane-bound organelles.

  5. Membrane protein structures without crystals, by single particle electron cryomicroscopy

    PubMed Central

    Vinothkumar, Kutti R

    2015-01-01

    It is an exciting period in membrane protein structural biology with a number of medically important protein structures determined at a rapid pace. However, two major hurdles still remain in the structural biology of membrane proteins. One is the inability to obtain large amounts of protein for crystallization and the other is the failure to get well-diffracting crystals. With single particle electron cryomicroscopy, both these problems can be overcome and high-resolution structures of membrane proteins and other labile protein complexes can be obtained with very little protein and without the need for crystals. In this review, I highlight recent advances in electron microscopy, detectors and software, which have allowed determination of medium to high-resolution structures of membrane proteins and complexes that have been difficult to study by other structural biological techniques. PMID:26435463

  6. Energy-coupled outer membrane transport proteins and regulatory proteins.

    PubMed

    Braun, Volkmar; Endriss, Franziska

    2007-06-01

    FhuA and FecA are two examples of energy-coupled outer membrane import proteins of gram-negative bacteria. FhuA transports iron complexed by the siderophore ferrichrome and serves as a receptor for phages, a toxic bacterial peptide, and a toxic protein. FecA transports diferric dicitrate and regulates transcription of an operon encoding five ferric citrate (Fec) transport genes. Properties of FhuA mutants selected according to the FhuA crystal structure are described. FhuA mutants in the TonB box, the hatch, and the beta-barrel are rather robust. TonB box mutants in FhuA FecA, FepA, Cir, and BtuB are compared; some mutations are suppressed by mutations in TonB. Mutant studies have not revealed a ferrichrome diffusion pathway, and tolerance to mutations in the region linking the TonB box to the hatch does not disclose a mechanism for how energy transfer from the cytoplasmic membrane to FhuA changes the conformation of FhuA such that bound substrates are released, the pore is opened, and substrates enter the periplasm, or how surface loops change their conformation such that TonB-dependent phages bind irreversibly and release their DNA into the cells. The FhuA and FecA crystal structures do not disclose the mechanism of these proteins, but they provide important information for specific functional studies. FecA is also a regulatory protein that transduces a signal from the cell surface into the cytoplasm. The interacting subdomains of the proteins in the FecA --> FecR --> FecI --> RNA polymerase signal transduction pathway resulting in fecABCDE transcription have been determined. Energy-coupled transporters transport not only iron and vitamin B12, but also other substrates of very low abundance such as sugars across the outer membrane; transcription regulation of the transport genes may occur similarly to that of the Fec transport genes. PMID:17370038

  7. Membrane Protein Mobility and Orientation Preserved in Supported Bilayers Created Directly from Cell Plasma Membrane Blebs.

    PubMed

    Richards, Mark J; Hsia, Chih-Yun; Singh, Rohit R; Haider, Huma; Kumpf, Julia; Kawate, Toshimitsu; Daniel, Susan

    2016-03-29

    Membrane protein interactions with lipids are crucial for their native biological behavior, yet traditional characterization methods are often carried out on purified protein in the absence of lipids. We present a simple method to transfer membrane proteins expressed in mammalian cells to an assay-friendly, cushioned, supported lipid bilayer platform using cell blebs as an intermediate. Cell blebs, expressing either GPI-linked yellow fluorescent proteins or neon-green fused transmembrane P2X2 receptors, were induced to rupture on glass surfaces using PEGylated lipid vesicles, which resulted in planar supported membranes with over 50% mobility for multipass transmembrane proteins and over 90% for GPI-linked proteins. Fluorescent proteins were tracked, and their diffusion in supported bilayers characterized, using single molecule tracking and moment scaling spectrum (MSS) analysis. Diffusion was characterized for individual proteins as either free or confined, revealing details of the local lipid membrane heterogeneity surrounding the protein. A particularly useful result of our bilayer formation process is the protein orientation in the supported planar bilayer. For both the GPI-linked and transmembrane proteins used here, an enzymatic assay revealed that protein orientation in the planar bilayer results in the extracellular domains facing toward the bulk, and that the dominant mode of bleb rupture is via the "parachute" mechanism. Mobility, orientation, and preservation of the native lipid environment of the proteins using cell blebs offers advantages over proteoliposome reconstitution or disrupted cell membrane preparations, which necessarily result in significant scrambling of protein orientation and typically immobilized membrane proteins in SLBs. The bleb-based bilayer platform presented here is an important step toward integrating membrane proteomic studies on chip, especially for future studies aimed at understanding fundamental effects of lipid interactions

  8. Membrane interaction of retroviral Gag proteins

    PubMed Central

    Dick, Robert A.; Vogt, Volker M.

    2014-01-01

    Assembly of an infectious retroviral particle relies on multimerization of the Gag polyprotein at the inner leaflet of the plasma membrane. The three domains of Gag common to all retroviruses – MA, CA, and NC – provide the signals for membrane binding, assembly, and viral RNA packaging, respectively. These signals do not function independently of one another. For example, Gag multimerization enhances membrane binding and is more efficient when NC is interacting with RNA. MA binding to the plasma membrane is governed by several principles, including electrostatics, recognition of specific lipid head groups, hydrophobic interactions, and membrane order. HIV-1 uses many of these principles while Rous sarcoma virus (RSV) appears to use fewer. This review describes the principles that govern Gag interactions with membranes, focusing on RSV and HIV-1 Gag. The review also defines lipid and membrane behavior, and discusses the complexities in determining how lipid and membrane behavior impact Gag membrane binding. PMID:24808894

  9. Single molecule techniques for the study of membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    García-Sáez, Ana J; Schwille, Petra

    2007-08-01

    Single molecule techniques promise novel information about the properties and behavior of individual particles, thus enabling access to molecular heterogeneities in biological systems. Their recent developments to accommodate membrane studies have significantly deepened the understanding of membrane proteins. In this short review, we will describe the basics of the three most common single-molecule techniques used on membrane proteins: fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, single particle tracking, and atomic force microscopy. We will discuss the most relevant findings made during the recent years and their contribution to the membrane protein field. PMID:17497147

  10. One-Dimensional Multichromophor Arrays Based on DNA: From Self-Assembly to Light-Harvesting.

    PubMed

    Ensslen, Philipp; Wagenknecht, Hans-Achim

    2015-10-20

    Light-harvesting complexes collect light energy and deliver it by a cascade of energy and electron transfer processes to the reaction center where charge separation leads to storage as chemical energy. The design of artificial light-harvesting assemblies faces enormous challenges because several antenna chromophores need to be kept in close proximity but self-quenching needs to be avoided. Double stranded DNA as a supramolecular scaffold plays a promising role due to its characteristic structural properties. Automated DNA synthesis allows incorporation of artificial chromophore-modified building blocks, and sequence design allows precise control of the distances and orientations between the chromophores. The helical twist between the chromophores, which is induced by the DNA framework, controls energy and electron transfer and thereby reduces the self-quenching that is typically observed in chromophore aggregates. This Account summarizes covalently multichromophore-modified DNA and describes how such multichromophore arrays were achieved by Watson-Crick-specific and DNA-templated self-assembly. The covalent DNA systems were prepared by incorporation of chromophores as DNA base substitutions (either as C-nucleosides or with acyclic linkers as substitutes for the 2'-deoxyribofuranoside) and as DNA base modifications. Studies with DNA base substitutions revealed that distances but more importantly relative orientations of the chromophores govern the energy transfer efficiencies and thereby the light-harvesting properties. With DNA base substitutions, duplex stabilization was faced and could be overcome, for instance, by zipper-like placement of the chromophores in both strands. For both principal structural approaches, DNA-based light-harvesting antenna could be realized. The major disadvantages, however, for covalent multichromophore DNA conjugates are the poor yields of synthesis and the solubility issues for oligonucleotides with more than 5-10 chromophore

  11. High-Throughput Baculovirus Expression System for Membrane Protein Production.

    PubMed

    Kalathur, Ravi C; Panganiban, Marinela; Bruni, Renato

    2016-01-01

    The ease of use, robustness, cost-effectiveness, and posttranslational machinery make baculovirus expression system a popular choice for production of eukaryotic membrane proteins. This system can be readily adapted for high-throughput operations. This chapter outlines the techniques and procedures for cloning, transfection, small-scale production, and purification of membrane protein samples in a high-throughput manner. PMID:27485337

  12. Network pattern of residue packing in helical membrane proteins and its application in membrane protein structure prediction.

    PubMed

    Pabuwal, Vagmita; Li, Zhijun

    2008-01-01

    De novo protein structure prediction plays an important role in studies of helical membrane proteins as well as structure-based drug design efforts. Developing an accurate scoring function for protein structure discrimination and validation remains a current challenge. Network approaches based on overall network patterns of residue packing have proven useful in soluble protein structure discrimination. It is thus of interest to apply similar approaches to the studies of residue packing in membrane proteins. In this work, we first carried out such analysis on a set of diverse, non-redundant and high-resolution membrane protein structures. Next, we applied the same approach to three test sets. The first set includes nine structures of membrane proteins with the resolution worse than 2.5 A; the other two sets include a total of 101 G-protein coupled receptor models, constructed using either de novo or homology modeling techniques. Results of analyses indicate the two criteria derived from studying high-resolution membrane protein structures are good indicators of a high-quality native fold and the approach is very effective for discriminating native membrane protein folds from less-native ones. These findings should be of help for the investigation of the fundamental problem of membrane protein structure prediction. PMID:18178566

  13. The Hydrophobic Insertion Mechanism of Membrane Curvature Generation by Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Campelo, Felix; McMahon, Harvey T.; Kozlov, Michael M.

    2008-01-01

    A wide spectrum of intracellular processes is dependent on the ability of cells to dynamically regulate membrane shape. Membrane bending by proteins is necessary for the generation of intracellular transport carriers and for the maintenance of otherwise intrinsically unstable regions of high membrane curvature in cell organelles. Understanding the mechanisms by which proteins curve membranes is therefore of primary importance. Here we suggest, for the first time to our knowledge, a quantitative mechanism of lipid membrane bending by hydrophobic or amphipathic rodlike inclusions which simulate amphipathic α-helices—structures shown to sculpt membranes. Considering the lipid monolayer matrix as an anisotropic elastic material, we compute the intramembrane stresses and strains generated by the embedded inclusions, determine the resulting membrane shapes, and the accumulated elastic energy. We characterize the ability of an inclusion to bend membranes by an effective spontaneous curvature, and show that shallow rodlike inclusions are more effective in membrane shaping than are lipids having a high propensity for curvature. Our computations provide experimentally testable predictions on the protein amounts needed to generate intracellular membrane shapes for various insertion depths and membrane thicknesses. We also predict that the ability of N-BAR domains to produce membrane tubules in vivo can be ascribed solely to insertion of their amphipathic helices. PMID:18515373

  14. A comprehensive strategy to identify stoichiometric membrane protein interactomes

    PubMed Central

    Gokhale, Avanti; Perez-Cornejo, Patricia; Duran, Charity; Hartzell, H. Criss; Faundez, Victor

    2012-01-01

    There are numerous experimental approaches to identify the interaction networks of soluble proteins, but strategies for the identification of membrane protein interactomes remain limited. We discuss in detail the logic of an experimental design that led us to identify the interactome of a membrane protein of complex membrane topology, the calcium activated chloride channel Anoctamin 1/Tmem16a (Ano1). We used covalent chemical stabilizers of protein-protein interactions combined with magnetic bead immuno-affinity chromatography, quantitative SILAC mass-spectrometry and in silico network construction. This strategy led us to define a putative Ano1 interactome from which we selected key components for functional testing. We propose a combination of procedures to narrow down candidate proteins interacting with a membrane protein of interest for further functional studies. PMID:23676845

  15. Negative Ions Enhance Survival of Membrane Protein Complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liko, Idlir; Hopper, Jonathan T. S.; Allison, Timothy M.; Benesch, Justin L. P.; Robinson, Carol V.

    2016-06-01

    Membrane protein complexes are commonly introduced to the mass spectrometer solubilized in detergent micelles. The collisional activation used to remove the detergent, however, often causes protein unfolding and dissociation. As in the case for soluble proteins, electrospray in the positive ion mode is most commonly used for the study of membrane proteins. Here we show several distinct advantages of employing the negative ion mode. Negative polarity can yield lower average charge states for membrane proteins solubilized in saccharide detergents, with enhanced peak resolution and reduced adduct formation. Most importantly, we demonstrate that negative ion mode electrospray ionization (ESI) minimizes subunit dissociation in the gas phase, allowing access to biologically relevant oligomeric states. Together, these properties mean that intact membrane protein ions can be generated in a greater range of solubilizing detergents. The formation of negative ions, therefore, greatly expands the possibilities of using mass spectrometry on this intractable class of protein.

  16. Negative Ions Enhance Survival of Membrane Protein Complexes.

    PubMed

    Liko, Idlir; Hopper, Jonathan T S; Allison, Timothy M; Benesch, Justin L P; Robinson, Carol V

    2016-06-01

    Membrane protein complexes are commonly introduced to the mass spectrometer solubilized in detergent micelles. The collisional activation used to remove the detergent, however, often causes protein unfolding and dissociation. As in the case for soluble proteins, electrospray in the positive ion mode is most commonly used for the study of membrane proteins. Here we show several distinct advantages of employing the negative ion mode. Negative polarity can yield lower average charge states for membrane proteins solubilized in saccharide detergents, with enhanced peak resolution and reduced adduct formation. Most importantly, we demonstrate that negative ion mode electrospray ionization (ESI) minimizes subunit dissociation in the gas phase, allowing access to biologically relevant oligomeric states. Together, these properties mean that intact membrane protein ions can be generated in a greater range of solubilizing detergents. The formation of negative ions, therefore, greatly expands the possibilities of using mass spectrometry on this intractable class of protein. Graphical Abstract ᅟ. PMID:27106602

  17. Negative Ions Enhance Survival of Membrane Protein Complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liko, Idlir; Hopper, Jonathan T. S.; Allison, Timothy M.; Benesch, Justin L. P.; Robinson, Carol V.

    2016-04-01

    Membrane protein complexes are commonly introduced to the mass spectrometer solubilized in detergent micelles. The collisional activation used to remove the detergent, however, often causes protein unfolding and dissociation. As in the case for soluble proteins, electrospray in the positive ion mode is most commonly used for the study of membrane proteins. Here we show several distinct advantages of employing the negative ion mode. Negative polarity can yield lower average charge states for membrane proteins solubilized in saccharide detergents, with enhanced peak resolution and reduced adduct formation. Most importantly, we demonstrate that negative ion mode electrospray ionization (ESI) minimizes subunit dissociation in the gas phase, allowing access to biologically relevant oligomeric states. Together, these properties mean that intact membrane protein ions can be generated in a greater range of solubilizing detergents. The formation of negative ions, therefore, greatly expands the possibilities of using mass spectrometry on this intractable class of protein.

  18. Fluorescence enhancement of light-harvesting complex 2 from purple bacteria coupled to spherical gold nanoparticles

    SciTech Connect

    Bujak, Ł.; Czechowski, N.; Piatkowski, D.; Litvin, R.; Mackowski, S.; Brotosudarmo, T. H. P.; Pichler, S.; Cogdell, R. J.; Heiss, W.

    2011-10-24

    The influence of plasmon excitations in spherical gold nanoparticles on the optical properties of a light-harvesting complex 2 (LH2) from the purple bacteria Rhodopseudomonas palustris has been studied. Systematic analysis is facilitated by controlling the thickness of a silica layer between Au nanoparticles and LH2 complexes. Fluorescence of LH2 complexes features substantial increase when these complexes are separated by 12 nm from the gold nanoparticles. At shorter distances, non-radiative quenching leads to a decrease of fluorescence emission. The enhancement of fluorescence originates predominantly from an increase of absorption of pigments comprising the LH2 complex.

  19. Path induced coherent energy transfer in light-harvesting complexes in purple bacteria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Kewei; Ye, Jun; Zhao, Yang

    2014-09-01

    Features of path dependent energy transfer in a dual-ring light-harvesting (LH2) complexes (B850) system have been examined in detail systematically. The Frenkel-Dirac time dependent variational method with the Davydov D1 Ansatz is employed with detailed evolution of polaron dynamics in real space readily obtained. It is found that the phase of the transmission amplitude through the LH2 complexes plays an important role in constructing the coherent excitonic energy transfer. It is also found that the symmetry breaking caused by the dimerization of bacteriochlorophylls and coherence or correlation between two rings will be conducive in enhancing the exciton transfer efficiency.

  20. Fluorescence enhancement of light-harvesting complex 2 from purple bacteria coupled to spherical gold nanoparticles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bujak, Ł.; Czechowski, N.; Piatkowski, D.; Litvin, R.; Mackowski, S.; Brotosudarmo, T. H. P.; Cogdell, R. J.; Pichler, S.; Heiss, W.

    2011-10-01

    The influence of plasmon excitations in spherical gold nanoparticles on the optical properties of a light-harvesting complex 2 (LH2) from the purple bacteria Rhodopseudomonas palustris has been studied. Systematic analysis is facilitated by controlling the thickness of a silica layer between Au nanoparticles and LH2 complexes. Fluorescence of LH2 complexes features substantial increase when these complexes are separated by 12 nm from the gold nanoparticles. At shorter distances, non-radiative quenching leads to a decrease of fluorescence emission. The enhancement of fluorescence originates predominantly from an increase of absorption of pigments comprising the LH2 complex.

  1. Toward understanding as photosynthetic biosignatures: light harvesting and energy transfer calculation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Komatsu, Y.; Umemura, M.; Shoji, M.; Shiraishi, K.; Kayanuma, M.; Yabana, K.

    2014-03-01

    Among several proposed biosignatures, red edge is a direct evidence of photosynthetic life if it is detected (Kiang et al 2007). Red edge is a sharp change in reflectance spectra of vegetation in NIR region (about 700-750 nm). The sign of red edge is observed by Earthshine or remote sensing (Wolstencroft & Raven 2002, Woolf et al 2002). But, why around 700-750 nm? The photosynthetic organisms on Earth have evolved to optimize the sunlight condition. However, if we consider about photosynthetic organism on extrasolar planets, they should have developed to utilize the spectra of its principal star. Thus, it is not strange even if it shows different vegetation spectra. In this study, we focused on the light absorption mechanism of photosynthetic organisms on Earth and investigated the fundamental properties of the light harvesting mechanisms, which is the first stage for the light absorption. Light harvesting complexes contain photosynthetic pigments like chlorophylls. Effective light absorption and the energy transfer are accomplished by the electronic excitations of collective photosynthetic pigments. In order to investigate this mechanism, we constructed an energy transfer model by using a dipole-dipole approximation for the interactions between electronic excitations. Transition moments and transition energies of each pigment are calculated at the time-dependent density functional theory (TDDFT) level (Marques & Gross 2004). Quantum dynamics simulation for the excitation energy transfer was calculated by the Liouvelle's equation. We adopted the model to purple bacteria, which has been studied experimentally and known to absorb lower energy. It is meaningful to focus on the mechanism of this bacteria, since in the future mission, M planets will become a important target. We calculated the oscillator strengths in one light harvesting complex and confirmed the validity by comparing to the experimental data. This complex is made of an inner and an outer ring. The

  2. Ab initio calculation of excitonic Hamiltonian of light-harvesting complex LH1 of Thermochromatium tepidum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kozlov, Maxim I.; Poddubnyy, Vladimir V.; Glebov, Ilya O.; Belov, Aleksandr S.; Khokhlov, Daniil V.

    2016-02-01

    The electronic properties of light-harvesting complexes determine the efficiency of energy transfer in photosynthetic antennae. Ab initio calculations of the electronic properties of bacteriochlorophylls (composing the LH1 complex of the purple bacteria Thermochromatium tepidum) were performed. Based on these calculations, the excitonic Hamiltonian of a native cyclic complex and the Hamiltonians of open complexes with several removed bacteriochlorophylls were constructed. Absorption spectra calculated based on these Hamiltonians agree well with the experimental data. We found that the parameters of interaction between the neighboring bacteriochlorophylls are significantly larger than the empirical parameters suggested previously.

  3. Energy transfer from conjugated polymer to bacterial light-harvesting complex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buczynska, D.; Bujak, Ł.; Loi, M. A.; Brotosudarmo, T. H. P.; Cogdell, R.; Mackowski, S.

    2012-10-01

    Energy transfer from a conjugated polymer blend (poly(9,9-dioctylfluorenyl-2,7-diyl):poly (2-methoxy-5-(2-ethylhexyloxy)-1, 4-phenylenevinylene) to a light-harvesting complex 2 from purple bacteria has been demonstrated using time-resolved fluorescence spectroscopy. For our hybrid nanostructure, we observe a 30% reduction of the fluorescence lifetime of the polymer emission as compared to the pure polymer layer. This result is an important step towards integrating naturally evolved biomolecules with synthetic materials into biohybrid organic electronic systems.

  4. Path induced coherent energy transfer in light-harvesting complexes in purple bacteria.

    PubMed

    Sun, Kewei; Ye, Jun; Zhao, Yang

    2014-09-28

    Features of path dependent energy transfer in a dual-ring light-harvesting (LH2) complexes (B850) system have been examined in detail systematically. The Frenkel-Dirac time dependent variational method with the Davydov D1 Ansatz is employed with detailed evolution of polaron dynamics in real space readily obtained. It is found that the phase of the transmission amplitude through the LH2 complexes plays an important role in constructing the coherent excitonic energy transfer. It is also found that the symmetry breaking caused by the dimerization of bacteriochlorophylls and coherence or correlation between two rings will be conducive in enhancing the exciton transfer efficiency. PMID:25273408

  5. Neutron and light scattering studies of light-harvesting photosynthetic antenna complexes

    SciTech Connect

    Tang, Kuo-Hsiang; Blankenship, Robert E.

    2011-06-28

    Small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) and dynamic light scattering (DLS) have been employed in studying the structural information of various biological systems, particularly in systems without high-resolution structural information available. In this report, we briefly present some principles and biological applications of neutron scattering and DLS, compare the differences in information that can be obtained with small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), and then report recent studies of SANS and DLS, together with other biophysical approaches, for light-harvesting antenna complexes and reaction centers of purple and green phototrophic bacteria.

  6. Light-Harvesting in n-ZnO/ p-Silicon Heterojunctions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, L.; Shan, C. X.; Li, B. H.; Yao, B.; Shen, D. Z.; Chu, B.; Lu, Y. M.

    2010-11-01

    Zinc oxide (ZnO) films were deposited onto Si to form n-ZnO/ p-Si heterojunctions. Under the illumination of by both ultraviolet (UV) light and sunlight, obvious photovoltaic behavior was observed. It was found that the conversion efficiency of the heterojunctions increased significantly with increasing thickness of the ZnO film, and the mechanism for light-harvesting in the heterojunctions is discussed. The results suggest that ZnO films may be helpful to increasing the harvesting of UV photons, thus decreasing the thermalization loss of UV energy in Si-based solar cells.

  7. Functionalized Nanoparticles and Surfaces for Controlled Chemical Catalysis and Effective Light Harvesting

    SciTech Connect

    Marye Anne Fox, James K. Whitesell

    2012-11-02

    We have prepared a range of such arrays as key components for biotechnology and photonic applications. These involve self-assembled arrays of increasing complexity with three-dimensionally disposed multilayer interactions. These arrays also include dendrimers as the distinguishing structural building blocks. These photoactive integrated systems have a regular, highly-branched, three-dimensional architecture. Structural modifications of these units include variation of the core, bridging layers, and terminal groups. These modifications result in a large array of dendritic molecules with potential applications for light harvesting.

  8. Light-harvesting effect in photoelectric conversion with dye multilayers on a semiconductor electrode

    SciTech Connect

    Sato, H.; Kawasaki, M.; Kasatani, K.; Higuchi Y.; Azuma, T.; Nishiyama, Y.

    1988-02-11

    A light-harvesting effect in the sensitized photocurrent of dye-containing multilayers on an Sb-doped SnO/sub 2/ optically transparent semiconductor electrode was studied. 2,8-Bis(dimethylamino)-10-dodecylacridinium bromide (BDA) was included as an antenna dye in the outer monolayer separated from the semiconductor surface with fatty acid monolayer(s), and dioctadecylthiacarbocyanine iodide (DTC) as a reaction center dye was incorporated in the monolayer in direct contact with the semiconductor. A remarkable enhancement of the photocurrent was observed as a result of efficient energy transfer from BDA to DTC.

  9. Coherence dynamics in light-harvesting complexes with two-colour spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richards, Gethin H.; Curmi, Paul M. G.; Wilk, Krystyna E.; Quiney, Harry M.; Davis, Jeffrey A.

    2013-03-01

    We investigate coherent dynamics in the cryptophyte light-harvesting complex Phycocyanin-645 (PC-645). A two-colour four-wave mixing experiment allows us to isolate a coherence pathway and observe its evolution in the absence of other signals. We measured a decoherence time of 540fs for the coherence [1]. Additionally oscillations in the signal pathway give evidence for the coherent excitation of states outside the bandwidth of the laser pulse. This suggests strong coupling between the excited states and phonon modes [1].

  10. Composition fluctuations, correlated response, and protein solvation in membranes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McConnell, Harden

    2010-05-01

    Membrane composition fluctuations are deduced from the deuterium NMR relaxation data of S. L. Veatch et al. [Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 104, 17650 (2007)]. A theoretical model for these fluctuations is used to determine the parameters of a correlation function. A fluctuation-response relation is then derived to infer the response of a lipid bilayer membrane to perturbations, such as the presence of a protein. The energy of the correlated response is shown to decrease as a bilayer miscibility critical point is approached from higher temperatures. Near the critical temperature the low energy of the composition response facilitates the lipid solvation of membrane proteins and minimizes lipid-mediated nonspecific protein-protein interactions. This facilitated lipid solvation of membrane proteins may be the basis of reports that at the growth temperature, the lipids of animal cell membranes have compositions such that they are within ˜10° of a miscibility critical point.

  11. X-ray Diffraction from Membrane Protein Nanocrystals

    PubMed Central

    Hunter, M.S.; DePonte, D.P.; Shapiro, D.A.; Kirian, R.A.; Wang, X.; Starodub, D.; Marchesini, S.; Weierstall, U.; Doak, R.B.; Spence, J.C.H.; Fromme, P.

    2011-01-01

    Membrane proteins constitute >30% of the proteins in an average cell, and yet the number of currently known structures of unique membrane proteins is <300. To develop new concepts for membrane protein structure determination, we have explored the serial nanocrystallography method, in which fully hydrated protein nanocrystals are delivered to an x-ray beam within a liquid jet at room temperature. As a model system, we have collected x-ray powder diffraction data from the integral membrane protein Photosystem I, which consists of 36 subunits and 381 cofactors. Data were collected from crystals ranging in size from 100 nm to 2 μm. The results demonstrate that there are membrane protein crystals that contain <100 unit cells (200 total molecules) and that 3D crystals of membrane proteins, which contain <200 molecules, may be suitable for structural investigation. Serial nanocrystallography overcomes the problem of x-ray damage, which is currently one of the major limitations for x-ray structure determination of small crystals. By combining serial nanocrystallography with x-ray free-electron laser sources in the future, it may be possible to produce molecular-resolution electron-density maps using membrane protein crystals that contain only a few hundred or thousand unit cells. PMID:21190672

  12. Protein quality control at the inner nuclear membrane

    PubMed Central

    Khmelinskii, Anton; Blaszczak, Ewa; Pantazopoulou, Marina; Fischer, Bernd; Omnus, Deike J.; Le Dez, Gaëlle; Brossard, Audrey; Gunnarsson, Alexander; Barry, Joseph D.; Meurer, Matthias; Kirrmaier, Daniel; Boone, Charles; Huber, Wolfgang; Rabut, Gwenaël; Ljungdahl, Per O.; Knop, Michael

    2015-01-01

    The nuclear envelope is a double membrane that separates the nucleus from the cytoplasm. The inner nuclear membrane (INM) functions in essential nuclear processes including chromatin organization and regulation of gene expression1. The outer nuclear membrane is continuous with the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and is the site of membrane protein synthesis. Protein homeostasis in this compartment is ensured by ER-associated protein degradation (ERAD) pathways that in yeast involve the integral membrane E3 ubiquitin ligases Hrd1 and Doa10 operating with the E2 ubiquitin-conjugating enzymes Ubc6 and Ubc72,3. However, little is known regarding protein quality control at the INM. Here we describe a protein degradation pathway at the INM mediated by the Asi complex consisting of the RING domain proteins Asi1 and Asi34. We report that the As complex functions together with the ubiquitin conjugating enzymes Ubc6andUbc7to degrade soluble and integral membrane proteins. Genetic evidence suggest that the Asi ubiquitin ligase defines a pathway distinct from but complementary to ERAD. Using unbiased screening with a novel genome-wide yeast library based on a tandem fluorescent protein timer (tFT)5, we identify more than 50 substrates of the Asi, Hrd1 and Doa10 E3 ubiquity ligases. We show that the Asi ubiquitin ligase is involved in degradation of mislocalised integral membrane proteins, thus acting to maintain and safeguard the identity of the INM. PMID:25519137

  13. Translation Levels Control Multi-Spanning Membrane Protein Expression

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Cecilia; Bostrom, Jenny; Fuh, Germaine; Lee, Chingwei V.; Huang, Arthur; Vandlen, Richard L.; Yansura, Daniel G.

    2012-01-01

    Attempts to express eukaryotic multi-spanning membrane proteins at high-levels have been generally unsuccessful. In order to investigate the cause of this limitation and gain insight into the rate limiting processes involved, we have analyzed the effect of translation levels on the expression of several human membrane proteins in Escherichia coli (E. coli). These results demonstrate that excessive translation initiation rates of membrane proteins cause a block in protein synthesis and ultimately prevent the high-level accumulation of these proteins. Moderate translation rates allow coupling of peptide synthesis and membrane targeting, resulting in a significant increase in protein expression and accumulation over time. The current study evaluates four membrane proteins, CD20 (4-transmembrane (TM) helixes), the G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs, 7-TMs) RA1c and EG-VEGFR1, and Patched 1 (12-TMs), and demonstrates the critical role of translation initiation rates in the targeting, insertion and folding of integral membrane proteins in the E. coli membrane. PMID:22563408

  14. Role of mitochondrial inner membrane organizing system in protein biogenesis of the mitochondrial outer membrane

    PubMed Central

    Bohnert, Maria; Wenz, Lena-Sophie; Zerbes, Ralf M.; Horvath, Susanne E.; Stroud, David A.; von der Malsburg, Karina; Müller, Judith M.; Oeljeklaus, Silke; Perschil, Inge; Warscheid, Bettina; Chacinska, Agnieszka; Veenhuis, Marten; van der Klei, Ida J.; Daum, Günther; Wiedemann, Nils; Becker, Thomas; Pfanner, Nikolaus; van der Laan, Martin

    2012-01-01

    Mitochondria contain two membranes, the outer membrane and the inner membrane with folded cristae. The mitochondrial inner membrane organizing system (MINOS) is a large protein complex required for maintaining inner membrane architecture. MINOS interacts with both preprotein transport machineries of the outer membrane, the translocase of the outer membrane (TOM) and the sorting and assembly machinery (SAM). It is unknown, however, whether MINOS plays a role in the biogenesis of outer membrane proteins. We have dissected the interaction of MINOS with TOM and SAM and report that MINOS binds to both translocases independently. MINOS binds to the SAM complex via the conserved polypeptide transport–associated domain of Sam50. Mitochondria lacking mitofilin, the large core subunit of MINOS, are impaired in the biogenesis of β-barrel proteins of the outer membrane, whereas mutant mitochondria lacking any of the other five MINOS subunits import β-barrel proteins in a manner similar to wild-type mitochondria. We show that mitofilin is required at an early stage of β-barrel biogenesis that includes the initial translocation through the TOM complex. We conclude that MINOS interacts with TOM and SAM independently and that the core subunit mitofilin is involved in biogenesis of outer membrane β-barrel proteins. PMID:22918945

  15. Curvature Forces in Membrane Lipid-Protein Interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Michael F.

    2012-02-01

    Membrane protein conformational changes, folding, and stability may all involve elastic deformation of the bilayer. Non-specific properties of the bilayer play a significant role in modulating protein conformational energetics. A flexible-surface model (FSM) describes the balance of curvature and hydrophobic forces in lipid-protein interactions. The FSM describes elastic coupling of membrane lipids to integral membrane proteins. Curvature and hydrophobic matching to the lipid bilayer entails a stress field that explains membrane protein stability. Rhodopsin provides an important example, where solid-state NMR and FTIR spectroscopy characterize the energy landscape of the dynamically activated receptor. Time-resolved UV-visible and FTIR spectroscopic studies show how membrane lipids affect the metarhodopsin equilibrium due to non-specific material properties. Influences of bilayer thickness, nonlamellar-forming lipids, detergents, and osmotic stress on rhodopsin function are all explained by the new biomembrane model. By contrast, the older fluid-mosaic model fails to account for such effects on membrane protein activity. According to the FSM proteins are regulated by membrane lipids whose spontaneous curvature most closely matches the activated state within the lipid membrane.

  16. Prediction of lipid-binding regions in cytoplasmic and extracellular loops of membrane proteins as exemplified by protein translocation membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Keller, Rob C A

    2013-01-01

    The presence of possible lipid-binding regions in the cytoplasmic or extracellular loops of membrane proteins with an emphasis on protein translocation membrane proteins was investigated in this study using bioinformatics. Recent developments in approaches recognizing lipid-binding regions in proteins were found to be promising. In this study a total bioinformatics approach specialized in identifying lipid-binding helical regions in proteins was explored. Two features of the protein translocation membrane proteins, the position of the transmembrane regions and the identification of additional lipid-binding regions, were analyzed. A number of well-studied protein translocation membrane protein structures were checked in order to demonstrate the predictive value of the bioinformatics approach. Furthermore, the results demonstrated that lipid-binding regions in the cytoplasmic and extracellular loops in protein translocation membrane proteins can be predicted, and it is proposed that the interaction of these regions with phospholipids is important for proper functioning during protein translocation. PMID:22961045

  17. Membrane-Protein Crystallography and Potentiality for Drug Design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamashita, Atsuko

    Structure-based drug design for membrane proteins is far behind that for soluble proteins due to difficulty in crystallographic structure determination, despite the fact that about 60% of FDA-approved drugs target membrane proteins located at the cell surface. Stable homologs for a membrane protein of interest, such as prokaryotic neurotransmitter transporter homolog LeuT, might enable cooperative analyses by crystallography and functional assays, provide useful information for functional mechanisms, and thus serve as important probes for drug design based on mechanisms as well as structures.

  18. BPROMPT: A consensus server for membrane protein prediction.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Paul D; Attwood, Teresa K; Flower, Darren R

    2003-07-01

    Protein structure prediction is a cornerstone of bioinformatics research. Membrane proteins require their own prediction methods due to their intrinsically different composition. A variety of tools exist for topology prediction of membrane proteins, many of them available on the Internet. The server described in this paper, BPROMPT (Bayesian PRediction Of Membrane Protein Topology), uses a Bayesian Belief Network to combine the results of other prediction methods, providing a more accurate consensus prediction. Topology predictions with accuracies of 70% for prokaryotes and 53% for eukaryotes were achieved. BPROMPT can be accessed at http://www.jenner.ac.uk/BPROMPT. PMID:12824397

  19. The Protein 4.1 family: hub proteins in animals for organizing membrane proteins.

    PubMed

    Baines, Anthony J; Lu, Hui-Chun; Bennett, Pauline M

    2014-02-01

    Proteins of the 4.1 family are characteristic of eumetazoan organisms. Invertebrates contain single 4.1 genes and the Drosophila model suggests that 4.1 is essential for animal life. Vertebrates have four paralogues, known as 4.1R, 4.1N, 4.1G and 4.1B, which are additionally duplicated in the ray-finned fish. Protein 4.1R was the first to be discovered: it is a major mammalian erythrocyte cytoskeletal protein, essential to the mechanochemical properties of red cell membranes because it promotes the interaction between spectrin and actin in the membrane cytoskeleton. 4.1R also binds certain phospholipids and is required for the stable cell surface accumulation of a number of erythrocyte transmembrane proteins that span multiple functional classes; these include cell adhesion molecules, transporters and a chemokine receptor. The vertebrate 4.1 proteins are expressed in most tissues, and they are required for the correct cell surface accumulation of a very wide variety of membrane proteins including G-Protein coupled receptors, voltage-gated and ligand-gated channels, as well as the classes identified in erythrocytes. Indeed, such large numbers of protein interactions have been mapped for mammalian 4.1 proteins, most especially 4.1R, that it appears that they can act as hubs for membrane protein organization. The range of critical interactions of 4.1 proteins is reflected in disease relationships that include hereditary anaemias, tumour suppression, control of heartbeat and nervous system function. The 4.1 proteins are defined by their domain structure: apart from the spectrin/actin-binding domain they have FERM and FERM-adjacent domains and a unique C-terminal domain. Both the FERM and C-terminal domains can bind transmembrane proteins, thus they have the potential to be cross-linkers for membrane proteins. The activity of the FERM domain is subject to multiple modes of regulation via binding of regulatory ligands, phosphorylation of the FERM associated domain and

  20. A Usual G-Protein-Coupled Receptor in Unusual Membranes.

    PubMed

    Chawla, Udeep; Jiang, Yunjiang; Zheng, Wan; Kuang, Liangju; Perera, Suchithranga M D C; Pitman, Michael C; Brown, Michael F; Liang, Hongjun

    2016-01-11

    G-protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are the largest family of membrane-bound receptors and constitute about 50% of all known drug targets. They offer great potential for membrane protein nanotechnologies. We report here a charge-interaction-directed reconstitution mechanism that induces