Evolution de la bioénergétique

Evolution of bioenergetics

Welcome to BiP 09

BIP 09 works on the evolution of the bioenergetic system and the redox reactions that fuel all life on earth.

Starting from the very beginning we investigate transition metal-based energy conversion as a basis for the appearance of life on earth exploring the reactivity of fougerite and its derivatives.

Taking the story from the other end we reconstruct phylogenetic  trees of extant enzymes to deduce the bioenergetic inventory of the Last Universal Common Ancestor of living beings. Our analysis revealed the structures of enzymes as an assembly of a limited set of building blocks that are arranged in many different ways to give rise to the wide variety of extant enzymes. This approach guides our research on individual enzymes: it influences the choice of our model organisms and informs the interpretation of results obtained on a specific enzyme by comparison to the other members of its enzyme family.

These bottom-up and top-down approaches join in our theoretical considerations of thermodynamics: the energy available in a couple of initial electron donor and terminal acceptor of a given chain, the resulting build-up of a transmembrane potential and more recently electron bifurcation as a disequilibrium generating device.

Molybdo-enzymes, Rieske/cytb complexes and Flavoenzymes are currently under study in our group. All three groups of enzymes have a wide distribution over the phylogenetic tree, potentially bifurcate electrons and adapt for Molybdo- and Flavoenzymes to a wide redox range and to different substrates.