A Personal Historical Introduction to Photosystem I: Ferredoxin + FNR, the Key to NADP+ Reduction

  • Anthony San Pietro
Part of the Advances in Photosynthesis and Respiration book series (AIPH, volume 24)


The system concerned with reduction of the pyridine nucleotide coenzymes depends on two proteins: a non-heme iron protein associated closely with the photochemical reaction center (Photosystem I) and a flavoprotein that functions as a reductase. The non-heme iron protein, previously known as the “methemoglobin reducing factor (MRF),” as “photosynthetic pyridine nucleotide reductase (PPNR),” and as the “TPN1 reducing factor (TRF),” is recognized as a member of a class of proteins now called “ferredoxin (Fd).” The FAD-containing flavoprotein known now as “Fd:NADP+ oxidoreductase (FNR)” was known previously as “TPNH diaphorase,” as “pyridine nucleotide transhydrogenase,” and as “TPN reductase.” An abbreviated review of the investigations leading to the isolation and characterization of these two proteins that have extended over a number of years and in a number of different laboratories is presented herein. This has unavoidably led to a synonymy and I describe here my personal recollection of how this came about.


Pyridine Nucleotide Reduce Pyridine Nucleotide Yeast Alcohol Dehydrogenase Personal Recollection Photochemical Reaction Center 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Arnon DI (1951) Extracellular photosynthetic reactions. Nature 167: 1008–1010PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Arnon DI, Whatley FR and Allen MB (1957) Triphosphopyridine nucleotide as a catalyst of photosynthetic phosphorylation. Nature 180: 182–185PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Avron M and Jagendorf AT (1956) A TPNH diaphorase from chloroplasts. Arch Biochem Biophys 65: 475–490PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Chance B and San Pietro A (1963) On the light-induced bleaching of photosynthetic pyridine nucleotide reductase in the presence of chloroplasts. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 49: 633–638PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Fry KT and San Pietro A (1962) Studies on photosynthetic pyridine nucleotide reductase. Biochem Biophys Res Commun 9: 218–221PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Fry KT, Lazzarini RA and San Pietro A (1963) The photoreduction of iron in photosynthetic pyridine nucleotide reductase. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 50: 652–657PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Gewitz HS and Volker FR (1962) On the respiratory enzyme of Chlorella. Z Physiol Chem 330: 124–131Google Scholar
  8. Hill R (1951) Oxidoreduction in chloroplasts. Symp Soc Exp Biol 5: 222Google Scholar
  9. Hill R and San Pietro A (1963) Hydrogen transport with chloroplasts. Z Naturforsch 186: 677–682Google Scholar
  10. Keister DL and San Pietro A (1959) Pyridine nucleotide transhydrogenase from spinach. Biochem Biophys Res Commun 1: 110–114CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Keister DL, San Pietro A and Stozenbach FE (1960) Pyridine nucleotide transhydrogenase from spinach: I. Purification and properties. J Biol Chem 235: 2989–2996PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Keister DL, San Pietro A and Stolzenbach FE (1962) Pyridine nucleotide transhydrogenase from spinach: II. Requirement of enzyme for photochemical accumulation of reduced pyridine nucleotides. Arch Biochem Biophys 98: 235–244PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Mortenson LE, Valentine RC and Carnahan JE (1962) An electron transport factor from Clostridium pasteurianum. Biochem Biophys Res Commun 7: 448–452PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. San Pietro A and Lang HM (1956) Accumulation of reduced pyridine nucleotides by illuminated grana. Science 124: 118–119CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. San Pietro A and Lang HM (1957) Incorporation of deuterium into oxidized pyridine nucleotides by illuminated grana. J Biol Chem 227: 483–493PubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. San Pietro A and Lang HM (1958) Photosynthetic pyridine nucleotide reductase: I. Partial purification and properties of the enzyme from spinach. J Biol Chem 231: 211–229PubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. Shin M, Tagawa K and Arnon DI (1963) Crystallization of ferredoxin-TPN reductase and its role in the photosynthetic apparatus of chloroplasts. Biochem Z 338: 84–96PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Tagawa K and Arnon DI (1962) Ferredoxins as electron carriers in photosynthesis and in the biological production and consumption of hydrogen gas. Nature 195: 537–543PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Tolmach LJ (1951) Effects of triphosphopyridine nucleotide upon oxygen evolution and carbon dioxide fixation by illuminated chloroplasts. Nature 167: 946–948PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Vishniac W and Ochoa S (1951) Photochemical reduction of pyridine nucleotides by spinach grana and coupled carbon dioxide fixation. Nature 167: 768–769PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anthony San Pietro
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiologyIndiana UniversityBloomingtonUSA

Personalised recommendations