A new era for electron bifurcation

John W. Peters, David N. Beratan, Brian Bothner, R. Brian Dyer, Caroline S. Harwood, Zachariah M. Heiden, Russ Hille, Anne Jones, Paul W. King, Yi Lu, Carolyn E. Lubner, Shelley D. Minteer, David W. Mulder, Simone Raugei, Gerrit J. Schut, Lance C. Seefeldt, Monika Tokmina-Lukaszewska, Oleg A. Zadvornyy, Peng Zhang, Michael WW Adams

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Electron bifurcation, or the coupling of exergonic and endergonic oxidation-reduction reactions, was discovered by Peter Mitchell and provides an elegant mechanism to rationalize and understand the logic that underpins the Q cycle of the respiratory chain. Thought to be a unique reaction of respiratory complex III for nearly 40 years, about a decade ago Wolfgang Buckel and Rudolf Thauer discovered that flavin-based electron bifurcation is also an important component of anaerobic microbial metabolism. Their discovery spawned a surge of research activity, providing a basis to understand flavin-based bifurcation, forging fundamental parallels with Mitchell's Q cycle and leading to the proposal of metal-based bifurcating enzymes. New insights into the mechanism of electron bifurcation provide a foundation to establish the unifying principles and essential elements of this fascinating biochemical phenomenon.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)32-38
Number of pages7
JournalCurrent Opinion in Chemical Biology
StatePublished - Dec 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'A new era for electron bifurcation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this