Structure/Function/Dynamics of Photosystem II Plastoquinone Binding Sites
Maya D. Lambreva, Daniela Russo, Fabio Polticelli, Viviana Scognamiglio, Amina Antonacci, Veranika Zobnina, Gaetano Campi and Giuseppina Rea
Affiliation: Institute of Crystallography, National Research Council, Monterotondo, Italy.
Photosystem II (PSII) continuously attracts the attention of researchers aiming to unravel the riddle of its functioning
and efficiency fundamental for all life on Earth. Besides, an increasing number of biotechnological applications
have been envisaged exploiting and mimicking the unique properties of this macromolecular pigment-protein complex.
The PSII organization and working principles have inspired the design of electrochemical water splitting schemes and
charge separating triads in energy storage systems as well as biochips and sensors for environmental, agricultural and industrial
screening of toxic compounds. An intriguing opportunity is the development of sensor devices, exploiting native
or manipulated PSII complexes or ad hoc synthesized polypeptides mimicking the PSII reaction centre proteins as biosensing
elements. This review offers a concise overview of the recent improvements in the understanding of structure and
function of PSII donor side, with focus on the interactions of the plastoquinone cofactors with the surrounding environment
and operational features. Furthermore, studies focused on photosynthetic proteins structure/function/dynamics and
computational analyses aimed at rational design of high-quality bio-recognition elements in biosensor devices are discussed.
Keywords: Molecular docking, molecular dynamics simulations, Photosystem II, plastoquinone, plastoquinone binding site,
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