Photosynthetic Electron Transfer and Energy Transduction in Plants

  • Donald R. Ort
  • John Whitmarsh
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (NSSA, volume 287)

Abstract

The photosynthetic membranes of plants perform a remarkable feat. They convert a portion of the energy available in light into the chemical energy of ATP and NADPH. In this way photosynthetic membranes provide a stable form of energy that can be used at later times for energy-requiring biochemical processes, such as the reduction of CO2 to carbohydrate. The first step in photosynthetic energy transformation is the absorption of light by the antenna array, resulting in the conversion of the transient energy stored in electromagnetic radiation into the excited state of pigment molecules. The excited state energy residing in the antenna system is short lived and must migrate rapidly to reaction center complexes, where it drives primary charge separation. The energy stored in the reaction centers by charge separation drives a series of oxidation/reduction reactions within the thylakoid membrane that ultimately convert the energy into the chemical free energy of ATP and NADPH. These energy conversion reactions are achieved by the cooperative interaction of four major protein complexes located in the thylakoid membrane. Three of these complexes, photosystems I and II (PS I and PS II) and the cytochrome bf complex (Cyt bf) are involved in light-driven electron and proton transfer. The fourth protein complex (ATP synthase) produces ATP from ADP and phosphate. In this introductory overview we have two goals. First is to introduce the players, that is the components of the chloroplast thylakoid membrane that are responsible for the basic reactions of photosynthetic electron transfer and energy transduction. Second we will track the energy transformations that ultimately result in the conversion of light energy into stable chemical forms. For the sake of clarity, we focus on general concepts and reference mostly review articles from which the interested reader can launch into the primary literature.

Keywords

Hydrolysis Sucrose Starch Chlorophyll Carbohydrate 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Bowes, G. (1993) Ann. Rev. Plant Physiol. and Plant Mol. Biol. 44; 309–332.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Boyer, P.D. (1979) in “Membrane Bioenergetics”, (C.P. Lee, G. Schatz, & L. Ernster, eds.), pp. 461–479. Addison-Wesley, Reading, MA.Google Scholar
  3. Cramer, W.A. & Black, M.T. (1987) in “The Light Reactions”, (J. Barber, ed.), pp. 447–493. Elsevier Science Publishers.Google Scholar
  4. Cramer, W.A. & Knaff, D.B. (1991) in “Energy Transduction in Biological Membranes”. Springer-Verlag, New York.Google Scholar
  5. Debus, R.J. (1992) Biochim. Biophys. Acta 1102; 269–352.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Ghanotakis, D.F. & Yocum, C.F. (1990) Annu. Rev. of Plant Physiol. Plant Mol. Biol. 41; 255–276.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Golbeck, J.H. (1992) Annu. Rev. Plant Physiol. Plant Mol. Biol. 43; 293–324.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Hansson, Ö. & Wydrzynski, T. (1990) Photosynth. Res. 23; 131–162.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Klotz, I.M. (1967) “Energy Changes in Biochemical Reactions”. Academic Press, New York, NY.Google Scholar
  10. Knox, R. (1995) “Excitons”. VCH Publishers/American Institute of Physics, New York.Google Scholar
  11. Krauss, N., et al. (1993) Nature 361; 326–331.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Kühlbrandt, W., D.N. Wang, & Fujiyoshi, Y. (1994) Nature 367; 614–621.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Murphy, D.J. (1986) Biochim. Biophys. Acta 864; 33–94.Google Scholar
  14. Mustardy, L.A. & A.G.S. Janossy (1979) Plant Science Letters 16; 281–284.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Nobel, P.S. (1991) “Physicochemical and environmental plant physiology”. Academic Press, San Diego, California.Google Scholar
  16. O’Keefe, D.P. (1988) Photosynth. Res. 17; 189–216.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Ort, D.R. (1986) in “Photosynthesis III — Photosynthetic Membranes and Light-Harvesting Systems”, (L.A. Staehelin and C.J. Arntzen, eds.), pp. 143–196. Springer-Verlag.Google Scholar
  18. Ort, D.R. & Oxborough, K. (1992) Annu. Rev. Plant Physiol. Plant Mol. Biol. 43; 269–291.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Ort, D.R. (1994) in “Encyclopedia of Agricultural Science” Academic Press, New York.Google Scholar
  20. Ort, D.R. & C.F. Yocum (1995) “Oxygenic Photosynthesis: The Light Reactions”. Kluwer Publisher, Dordrecht, The Netherlands.Google Scholar
  21. Paolillo, D.J. & Falk, R.H. (1966) American Journal of Botany 53; 173–180.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Staehelin, L.A. (1986) in “Photosynthesis III — Photosynthetic Membranes and Light Harvesting Systems”, (L.A. Staehelin and C.A. Arntzen, eds.), pp. 1–84. Springer-Verlag, Heidelberg, Germany.Google Scholar
  23. Taiz, L. & E. Zeiger (1991) “Plant Physiology”. The Benjamin/Cummings Publishing Co., Inc., Redwood City. California.Google Scholar
  24. Walker, D. (1992) in “Energy, Plants and Man”. Packing Publishing Ltd., Sheffield, UK.Google Scholar
  25. Whitmarsh, J. & Govindjee (1995) in “Encyclopedia of Applied Physics”, G.L. Trigg, VCH Publishers/American Institute of Physics, New York.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Donald R. Ort
    • 1
  • John Whitmarsh
    • 1
  1. 1.Photosynthesis Research Unit, USDA/ARS & Department of Plant BiologyUniversity of IllinoisUrbanaUSA

Personalised recommendations