Most life forms on Earth are supported by solar energy harnessed by oxygenic photosynthesis. In eukaryotes, photosynthesis is achieved by large membrane-embedded supercomplexes, containing reaction centers and connected antennae. Here, we report the structure of the higher plant PSI-LHCI super-complex determined at 2.8 Å resolution. The structure includes 16 subunits and more than 200 prosthetic groups, which are mostly light harvesting pigments. The complete structures of the four LhcA subunits of LHCI include 52 chlorophyll a and 9 chlorophyll b molecules, as well as 10 carotenoids and 4 lipids. The structure of PSI-LHCI includes detailed protein pigments and pigment-pigment interactions, essential for the mechanism of excitation energy transfer and its modulation in one of nature’s most efficient photochemical machines.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)