Electron and proton transport in chloroplasts with allowance for lateral heterogeneity of thylakoids. A mathematical model

A. V. Vershubskii, V. I. Priklonskii, A. N. Tikhonov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


A mathematical model of a chloroplast was constructed, which takes into account the inhomogeneous distribution of complexes of photosystems I and II between granal and intergranal thylakoids. The structural and functional complexes of photosystems I and II, which are localized in intergranal and granal thylakoids, respectively, and the blf complex, which is uniformly distributed in thylakoid membranes, are assumed to be immobile. The interactions between spatially distant electron transport complexes are provided by plastoquinone and plastocyanine, which diffuse in the thylakoid membrane and intrathylakoid space respectively. The main stages of proton transport associated with the functioning of photosystem II and oxidation-reduction transformations of plastoquinone are considered. The model takes into account the interactions of protons with membrane-bound buffer groups, the lateral diffusion of hydrogen ions in the intrathylakoid space and in the lumen between adjacent granal thylakoids, and the transmembrane proton transport associated with the function of ATP synthase and passive leakage of protons from thylakoids outside. The numerical integration of two systems of differential equations describing the behavior of some variables in two different regions: granal and intergranal thylakoids was performed. The model describes adequately the kinetics of processes being studied and predicts the occurrence of inhomogeneous lateral profiles of proton potentials and redox state of electron carriers. Modeling the electron and proton transport with allowance for the topological features of chloroplasts (lateral heterogeneity of thylakoids) is important for correct interpretation of «power-flux» interactions and the experimentally measured kinetic parameters averaged over the entire spatially inhomogeneous thylakoid system.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages1
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Chloroplast
  • Electron and proton transport
  • Lateral heterogeneity
  • Thylakoids

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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