Computational Investigation of the Spin-Density Asymmetry in Photosynthetic Reaction Center Models from First Principles

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  • Denis Artiukhin
  • Patrick Eschenbach, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität, Münster, Germany
  • Johannes Neugebauer, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, Unknown
We present a computational analysis of the spin-density asymmetry in cation radical states of reaction center models from photosystem I, photosystem II, and bacteria from Synechococcus elongatus, Thermococcus vulcanus, and Rhodobacter sphaeroides, respectively. The recently developed frozen-density embedding (FDE)-diab methodology [J. Chem. Phys., 2018, 148, 214104] allowed us to effectively avoid the spin-density overdelocalization error characteristic for the standard Kohn–Sham density functional theory and to reliably calculate spin-density distributions and electronic couplings for a number of molecular systems ranging from inner pairs of (bacterio)chlorophyll a molecules in vacuum to large proteins including up to about 2000 atoms. The calculated spin densities show a good agreement with available experimental results and were used to validate reaction center models reported in the literature. Here, we demonstrate that the applied theoretical approach is very sensitive to changes in molecular structures and the relative orientation of molecules. This makes FDE-diab a valuable tool for electronic structure calculations of large photosynthetic models effectively complementing the existing experimental techniques.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry B
Pages (from-to)4873–4888
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020

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