Received July 2, 2004
Pigment-protein complexes in photosynthetic membranes exist mainly as aggregates that are functionally active as monomers but more stable due to their ability to dissipate excess energy. Dissipation of energy in the photosystem I (PSI) trimers of cyanobacteria takes place with a contribution of the long-wavelength chlorophylls whose excited state is quenched by cation radical of P700 or P700 in its triplet state. If P700 in one of the monomer complexes within a PSI trimer is oxidized, energy migration from antenna of other monomer complexes to cation radical of P700 via peripherally localized long-wavelength chlorophylls results in energy dissipation, thus protecting PSI complex of cyanobacteria against photodestruction. It is suggested that dissipation of excess absorbed energy in aggregates of the light-harvesting complex LHCII of higher plants takes place with a contribution of peripherally located chlorophylls and carotenoids.
KEY WORDS: antenna chlorophyll, P700, energy dissipation, light-harvesting complex LHCII, photosystem I trimer