1. Structure and function of photosynthetic pigments and apparatus


The photosynthetic apparatus mostly consists of (bacterio)chlorophyll and carotenoid molecules that are bound non-covalently to the protein amino acid residue. The arrangement and composition of the pigment molecules play very important role in the function of the apparatus to capture, transfer and store light energy. The photosynthetic pigments, such as carotenoids, also play a photo-protection function in addition to light-harvesting function to protects the apparatus from deadly high energy irradiation (UV-blue light) and singlet oxygen species. Some photosynthetic bacteria and marine algae are very adaptive to the local environment, i.e. available light energy spectrum and/or the intensity of light, by having unique light-harvesting apparatus with different composition and arrangement of pigment molecules. In the marine resource, it is also interesting that some endophytic coral symbionts also contain photosynthetic pigments, which has been hypothesised to have correlation with the coral survival.


This research topics aims to study the composition, structure and function of pigments and the light-harvesting apparatus from algae, diatoms, and bacteria that are found from the seawater and in the coral symbiotic community. To study this topic, our laboratory is equipped with modern facilities for separation, identification and characterisation of pigments and protein, i.e. high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), ÄKTA protein purification, ultracentrifugation, ion exchange chromatography, gel electrophoresis, UV-Vis absorption spectroscopy, FT-IR spectroscopy, fluorescence spectroscopy, and electrospray ionisation-triple quadrupole mass spectrometry (ESI-MS/MS).


Related publications:

Brotosudarmo, T.H.P., Hofmann, E., Hiller, R.G., Wörmke, S., Mackowski, S., Zumbusch, A., Bräuchle, C. and Scheer, H. (2006): Peridinin-Chlorophyll-Protein Reconstituted with Chlorophyll Mixtures: Preparation, Bulk and Single Molecule Spectroscopy, FEBS Letters, 580, 5257–5262.


Brotosudarmo, T.H.P., Collins, A.M., Gall, A., Roszak, A.W., Gardiner, A.T., Blankenship, R.E. and Cogdell, R.J. (2011) The light intensity under which cells are grown controls the type of peripheral light-harvesting complexes that are assembled in a purple photosynthetic bacterium, Biochemical Journal 440, 51-61


Bujak, L., Olejnik, M., Brotosudarmo, T.H.P., Schmidt, M.K., Czechowski, N., Piatkowski, D., Aizpurua J., Cogdell, R.J., Heiss, W., Mackowski, S. (2014) Polarization control of metal-enhanced fluorescence in hybrid assemblies of photosynthetic complexes and gold nanorods, Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics, 16, 9015-9022


Heriyanto, Juliadiningtyas, A.D, Shioi, Y., Limantara, L., Brotosudarmo, T.H.P. (2017) Analysis of pigment composition of brown seaweeds collected from Panjang Island, Central Java, Indonesia, Philippine Journal of Science 146(3): 323-330

2. Developing spectroscopy and imaging methods for in vivo pigments analysis


Analytical methods play very important role for our photosynthesis research in the observation, measurement, characterisation and quantification. To observe, characterise and study the pigments in vivo, we develop a homebuilt laser confocal fluorescence microscope. Measurement of leaf chlorophyll in intact condition plays important role nowadays for agriculture, especially to monitor plant health, production and sustainable management. Therefore, in this research topic we also develop low-cost handheld or bench imaging system and used wide range of remote imaging technologies, e.g. Sentinel, Lansat, RapidEyeTM, SAR, and drone photography. We are doing image analysis and manipulation to optimise the detection resolution and subtract important information about area of plantation, plant height, plant species composition, vegetation index, and water index.


Related publications:


Adhiwibawa, M.A.S., Setiawan, Y.E., Prilianti, K.R., Brotosudarmo, T.H.P. (2015) Web camera as low cost multispectral sensor for quantification of chlorophyll in soybean leaves, Proceeding of SPIE9444, doi:10.1117/12.2080951


Adhiwibawa, M.A.S., Setiawan, Y.E., Setiawan Y., Prilianti, K.R., Brotosudarmo, T.H.P. (2015) Application of simple multispectral image sensor and artificial intelligence for predicting of drought tolerant variety of soybean, Procedia Chemistry, 14, 246-255


Indriatmoko, Shioi, Y., Brotosudarmo, T.H.P., Limantara, L. (2015) Separation of photosynthetic pigments by high-performance liquid chromatography: comparison of column performance, mobile phase, and temperature, Procedia Chemistry, 14, 202-210


Prilianti, K.R., Hariyanto, S., Natali, F.D.D., Indriatmoko, Adhiwibawa, M.A.S., Limantara, L., Brotosudarmo, T.H.P (2016) Artificial neural network model for photosynthetic pigments identification using multi wavelength chromatographic data, The American Institute of Physics Conference Proceedings, 1723, 030016