Aug 27, 2013

Proton transport facilitating water-oxidation: the role of second sphere ligands surrounding the catalytic metal cluster

Photosynthesis Research
Han BaoRobert L Burnap


The ability of PSII to extract electrons from water, with molecular oxygen as a by-product, is a remarkable biochemical and evolutionary innovation. From an evolutionary perspective, the invention of PSII approximately 2.7 Ga led to the accelerated accumulation of biomass in the biosphere and the accumulation of oxygen in the atmosphere, a combination that allowed for the evolution of a much more complex and extensive biosphere than would otherwise have been possible. From the biochemical and enzymatic perspective, PSII is remarkable because of the thermodynamic and kinetic obstacles that needed to have been overcome to oxidize water as the ultimate photosynthetic electron donor. This article focuses on how proton release is an integral part of how these kinetic and thermodynamic obstacles have been overcome: the sequential removal of protons from the active site of H2O-oxidation facilitates the multistep oxidation of the substrate water at the Mn4CaOx, the catalytic heart of the H2O-oxidation reaction. As noted previously, the facilitated deprotonation of the Mn4CaOx cluster exerts a redox-leveling function preventing the accumulation of excess positive charge on the cluster, which might otherwise hinder the already energetica...Continue Reading

Mentioned in this Paper

Recombination, Genetic
Amino Acid [EPC]

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