Electric field-induced lateral mobility of photosystem I in the photosynthetic membrane: A study by electrophotoluminescence

Vlad Brumfeld*, Israel R. Miller, Rafi Korenstein

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Electrophoretic movement of photosystem I (PS I) along the photosynthetic membrane of hypotonically swollen thylakoid vesicles was studied by analyzing the electric field-stimulated delayed luminescence (electrophotoluminescence) emitted from PS I. The electrophoretic mobility was inferred from the differences in electrophotoluminescence (EPL) of the photosynthetic vesicles in presence and absence of trains of low amplitude (<80 V/cm) prepulses of 1 ms duration at 4 ms spacing. The average apparent electric mobility, determined from the time course of EPL increase on one hemisphere or its decrease on the other one, as function of prepulse length and intensity was of the order of 3 · 10-5 cm2V-1s-1. The assymetric distribution of the PS I reached a steady state when the diffusional, electrostatic, and elastic forces balanced the electrophoretic driving force. A lateral diffusion coefficient of ∼5 · 10-9 cm2s-1 was found for the PS I complex from the diffusional relaxation after cessation of the electric field pulse train. Experimental conditions such as concentration, temperature, and viscosity of the aqueous solution were not critical for the effect. Between 23 and 150 electron charges per moving particle were estimated from the measured electrophoretic mobility.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)607-614
Number of pages8
JournalBiophysical Journal
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1989


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