On the Origin of Photosynthesis

  title={On the Origin of Photosynthesis},
  author={Mitch Leslie},
  pages={1286 - 1287}
  • M. Leslie
  • Published 6 March 2009
  • Education
  • Science
Where would we be without photosynthesis? In the third essay in Science9s series in honor of the Year of Darwin, Mitch Leslie details researchers9 efforts to piece together how and when organisms first began to harness light9s energy. 

Earth’s atmosphere as a result of coevolution of geo-and biospheres

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Whole-Genome Analysis of Photosynthetic Prokaryotes

A whole-genome comparison of representatives from all five groups of photosynthetic prokaryotes is reported and shows that horizontal gene transfer has been pivotal in their evolution and indicates that the core components of photosynthesis have been subject to lateral transfer.

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  • E. NisbetR. Nisbet
  • Environmental Science
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2008
Photosynthetic and greenhouse-controlling competitions between marine algae, cyanobacteria, and terrestrial C3 and C4 plants may collectively set the CO2:O2 ratio of the modern atmosphere, maximizing the productivity close to rubisco compensation and glacial limits.

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  • R. Buick
  • Environmental Science, Geology
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2008
The hypothesis that oxygenic photosynthesis evolved well before the atmosphere became permanently oxygenated seems well supported, and could have arisen by the start of the geological record.

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Conservation of distantly related membrane proteins: photosynthetic reaction centers share a common structural core.

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Modifications of reaction centres from the purple bacterium Rhodobacter sphaeroides result in the generation of a tyrosyl radical in a manner similar to that of photosystem II, and optical and electron paramagnetic resonance spectra showed changes consistent with oxidation of the tyrosine.