Mathematical Simulation of Electron Transport in the Primary Photosynthetic Processes

Biochemistry (Mosc). 2022 Oct;87(10):1065-1083. doi: 10.1134/S0006297922100017.


Summarized results of investigation of regulation of electron transport and associated processes in the photosynthetic membrane using methods of mathematical and computer modeling carried out at the Department of Biophysics, Faculty of Biology, Lomonosov Moscow State University, are presented in this review. Detailed kinetic models of processes in the thylakoid membrane were developed using the apparatus of differential equations. Fitting of the model curves to the data of spectral measurements allowed us to estimate the values of parameters that were not determined directly in experiments. The probabilistic method of agent-based Monte Carlo modeling provides ample opportunities for studying dynamics of heterogeneous systems based on the rules for the behavior of individual elements of the system. Algorithms for simplified representation of Big Data make it possible to monitor changes in the photosynthetic apparatus in the course of culture growth in a photobioreactor and for the purpose of environmental monitoring. Brownian and molecular models describe movement and interaction of individual electron carrier proteins and make it possible to study electrostatic, hydrophobic, and other interactions leading to regulation of conformational changes in the reaction complexes. Direct multiparticle models explicitly simulate Brownian diffusion of the mobile protein carriers and their electrostatic interactions with multienzyme complexes both in solution and in heterogeneous interior of a biomembrane. The combined use of methods of kinetic and Brownian multiparticle and molecular modeling makes it possible to study the mechanisms of regulation of an integral system of electron transport processes in plants and algae at molecular and subcellular levels.

Keywords: Brownian multiparticle models; electron transport; fluorescence; kinetic models; molecular modeling; photosynthesis.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Carrier Proteins
  • Computer Simulation
  • Electron Transport
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological
  • Multienzyme Complexes
  • Photosynthesis* / physiology
  • Plants*


  • Multienzyme Complexes
  • Carrier Proteins