The photosynthetic reaction center (RC) from the purple Rhodobacter (R.)
sphaeroides bacterium is a protein with unique photoconversion
capability that can be exploited in hybrid systems for energy conversion. We
have developed a tailored aryleneethynylene organic fluorophore (AE750) acting
as efficient light harvesting antenna and successfully bioconjugated it to the
photosynthetic RC. We have also demonstrated that, under suitable conditions,
the biohybrid AE750-RC system can outperform the energy photoconversion ability
of the native protein.