A quantitative model of the energy transfer in LHCII

Kieran Fox, Chris Duffy
The School of Biological and Chemical Sciences, Queen Mary’s University of London, Mile End Road, London, E1 4NS.

There have been many theoretical models designed to represent non-photochemical quenching in the light harvesting systems of higher plants. An ‘all pigment’ model was recently released by Duffy et al.[1], but we propose two improvements to the method used in this study. We have updated the geometries of the pigments in accordance with the findings from our recent paper[2]. It showed that unrestricted optimisation of the pigments, whilst preserving distortions caused by the protein, is crucial to accurately predicting inter-pigment energetic coupling. We have also used work by van Amerongen et al.[3] to adapt the carotenoid S1 energies by reproducing carotenoid to chlorophyll hopping times. In making these changes we have created a model which more accurately predicts the measured mean excitation lifetime of the crystal structure of LHCII[4]. With further confidence in the model, we can then apply it to other LHCII conformations generated from MD.


[1] J. Chmeliov, W. P. Bricker, C. Lo, E. Jouin, L. Valkunas, A. V. Ruban and C. D. P. Duffy, Physical chemistry chemical physics : PCCP, 2015, 17, 15857-15867.
[2] K. F. Fox, W. P. Bricker, C. Lo and C. D. P. Duffy, J. Phys. Chem. B, 2015, 119, 15550-15560.
[3] C. C. Gradinaru, I. H. M. van Stokkum, A. A. Pascal, R. van Grondelle and H. van Amerongen, The Journal of Physical Chemistry B, 2000, 104, 9330-9342.
[4] Z. F. Liu, H. C. Yan, K. B. Wang, T. Y. Kuang, J. P. Zhang, L. L. Gui, X. M. An and W. R. Chang, Nature, 2004, 428, 287-292.