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Electronic Wiring of a Multi-Redox Site Membrane Protein in a Biomimetic Surface Architecture



Marcel G. Friedrich, Joseph W. Robertson, Dieter Walz, Wolfgang Knoll, Renate L. Naumann


Electronic coupling of proteins to electrodes is an active field of research. Electronic coupling of membrane proteins remains difficult because the proteins require a bilayer lipid membrane to stay functionally intact. A biomimetic membrane system is applied to the oriented immobilization of cytochrome c oxidase, CcO, from Rhodobacter sphaeroides. The protein is immobilized with its electron entrance side directed towards the electrode and reconstituted in-situ into a lipid bilayer. It is thus addressable by direct electron transfer referred to as electronic wiring because its exceptionally high velocity, not observed before. It allows us to perform a complete thermodynamic and kinetic analysis of four consecutive electron transfer processes in a multi-redox centered membrane protein by a combination of surface enhanced resonance Raman spectroscopy and electrochemistry. New mechanistic insights into proton translocation processes were obtained by comparative investigations under aerobic and anaerobic conditions. This bioelectronic approach opens a new field of activity to investigate complex processes in membrane proteins by simultaneously applying many kinds of electrical and spectroscopic methods.
Biophysical Journal


biochemistry, cytochrome c oxidase, electrochemistry, protein-tethered bilayer lipid membranes, supported membranes


Friedrich, M. , Robertson, J. , Walz, D. , Knoll, W. and Naumann, R. (2008), Electronic Wiring of a Multi-Redox Site Membrane Protein in a Biomimetic Surface Architecture, Biophysical Journal, [online], (Accessed April 15, 2024)
Created May 4, 2008, Updated October 12, 2021