2013 - Photocycle and vectorial proton transfer in a rhodopsin from the eukaryote Oxyrrhis marina

Icon N1   SURFE²R ONE (a predecessor model of SURFE²R N1) publication in Biochemistry (2013)

Janke C., Scholz F., Becker-Baldus J., Glaubitz C., Wood P.G., Bamberg E., Wachtveitl J., Bamann C.

Biochemistry (2013) 52(16):2750-2763


Retinylidene photoreceptors are ubiquitously present in marine protists as first documented by the identification of green proteorhodopsin (GPR). We present a detailed investigation of a rhodopsin from the protist Oxyrrhis marina (OR1) with respect to its spectroscopic properties and to its vectorial proton transport. Despite its homology to GPR, OR1's features differ markedly in its pH dependence. Protonation of the proton acceptor starts at pH below 4 and is sensitive to the ionic conditions. The mutation of a conserved histidine H62 did not influence the pK(a) value in a similar manner as in other proteorhodopsins where the charged histidine interacts with the proton acceptor forming the so-called His-Asp cluster. Mutational and pH-induced effects were further reflected in the temporal behavior upon light excitation ranging from femtoseconds to seconds. The primary photodynamics exhibits a high sensitivity to the environment of the proton acceptor D100 that are correlated to the different initial states. The mutation of the H62 does not affect photoisomerization at neutral pH. This is in agreement with NMR data indicating the absence of the His-Asp cluster. The subsequent steps in the photocycle revealed protonation reactions at the Schiff base coupled to proton pumping even at low pH. The main electrogenic steps are associated with the reprotonation of the Schiff base and internal proton donor. Hence, OR1 shows a different theme of the His-Asp organization where the low pK(a) of the proton acceptor is not dominated by this interaction, but by other electrostatic factors.

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