In biological/bioenergetics research the response of a complex system to an externally applied perturbation is often studied. Spectroscopic measurements at multiple wavelengths are used to monitor the kinetics. These time-resolved spectra are considered as an example of multiway data. In this paper, the methodology for global and target analysis of time-resolved spectra is reviewed. To fully extract the information from the overwhelming amount of data, a model-based analysis is mandatory. This analysis is based upon assumptions regarding the measurement process and upon a physicochemical model for the complex system. This model is composed of building blocks representing scientific knowledge and assumptions. Building blocks are the instrument response function (IRF), the components of the system connected in a kinetic scheme, and anisotropy properties of the components. The combination of a model for the kinetics and for the spectra of the components results in a more powerful spectrotemporal model. The model parameters, like rate constants and spectra, can be estimated from the data, thus providing a concise description of the complex system dynamics. This spectrotemporal modeling approach is illustrated with an elaborate case study of the ultrafast dynamics of the photoactive yellow protein.
Copyright 2004 Elsevier B.V.