High-Time Resolution Electron Paramagnetic Resonance Study of Quantum Beat Oscillations Observed in Photosynthetic Reaction Center Proteins

  • Gerd Kothe
  • James R. Norris
  • Oleg G. Poluektov
  • Marion C. Thurnauer
Part of the Advances in Photosynthesis and Respiration book series (AIPH, volume 26)

The primary energy conversion steps of bacterial and plant photosynthesis proceed via light-induced radical pairs as short-lived intermediates. Time-resolved EPR experiments of the photosynthetic reaction centers monitor the key charge separated state between the oxidized electron donor and reduced acceptor P•+ 700A1 •– of Photosystem I. The observed EPR spectra of P•+ 700A1 •– are indicative of a spin-correlated radical pair that is populated from the excited singlet state of the primary electron donor. Importantly, the spin-correlated radical pair nature of the charge-separated state is a common feature of all photosynthetic reaction centers, which gives rise to several interesting spin-phenomena such as quantum beats, observed at short delay times after optical excitation. In this chapter we present details of the quantum beat phenomena studied by high-time resolution transient and pulsed EPR of Photosystem I reaction centers. The understanding and analysis of the quantum beat oscillations in combination with high-field EPR allows us to obtain the three-dimensional structure of P•+ 700A1 •– as well as its arrangement in the membrane. We expect that this is of general interest, because the detailed structure of radical pair intermediates can be determined on a nanosecond time scale. In addition, by monitoring the quantum beat oscillations with a pulsed EPR approach, we shed new light on the electronic structure of the oxidized primary electron donor, P•+ 700.


Electron Paramagnetic Resonance Microwave Pulse Photosynthetic Reaction Center Electron Spin Echo Envelope Modulation Electron Spin Polarization 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gerd Kothe
    • 1
  • James R. Norris
    • 2
  • Oleg G. Poluektov
    • 3
  • Marion C. Thurnauer
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Physical ChemistryUniversity of FreiburgGermany
  2. 2.Department of ChemistryThe University of ChicagoChicagoUSA
  3. 3.Chemistry DivisionArgonne National LaboratoryArgonneUSA

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