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Review
. 1999;187:161-202.
doi: 10.1016/s0074-7696(08)62418-3.

Bacteriorhodopsin

Affiliations
Review

Bacteriorhodopsin

J K Lanyi. Int Rev Cytol. .

Abstract

Bacteriorhodopsin is a seven-transmembrane helical protein that contains all-trans retinal. In this light-driven pump, a reaction cycle initiated by photoisomerization to 13-cis causes translocation of a proton across the membrane. Local changes in the geometry of the protonated Schiff base and the proton acceptor Asp85, and the proton conductivities of the half channels that lead from this active site to the two membrane surfaces, interact so as to allow timely proton transfers that result in proton release on the extracellular side and proton uptake on the cytoplasmic one. The details of the steps in this photocycle, and the underlying principles that ensure unidirectionality of the movement of a proton across the protein, provide strong clues to how ion pumps function.

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