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An elementary kinetic model of energy coupling in biological membranes

By Ernesto Cristina and Julio A Hernández


AbstractThe purpose of this work is to contribute to the understanding of the fundamental kinetic properties of the processes of energy coupling in biological membranes. For this, we consider a model of a microorganism that, in its plasma membrane, expresses two electrogenic enzymes (E1 and E2) transporting the same monovalent cation C and electrodiffusive paths for C and for a monovalent anion A. E1 (E2) couples transport C to the reaction S1↔P1 (S2↔P2). We developed a mathematical model that describes the rate of change of the electrical potential difference across the membrane, of the internal concentrations of C and A, and of the concentrations of S2 and P2. The enzymes are incorporated via two-state kinetic models; the passive ionic fluxes are represented by classical formulations of electrodiffusion. The microorganism volume is maintained constant by accessory regulatory devices. The model is utilized for stationary and dynamic studies for the case of bacteria employing the electrochemical gradient of Na+ as energetic intermediate. Among other conclusions, the results show that the membrane potential represents the relevant kinetic intermediate for the overall coupling between the energy donor reaction S1↔P1 and the synthesis of S2

Publisher: Elsevier Science B.V.
Year: 2000
DOI identifier: 10.1016/S0005-2728(00)00153-5
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