2014 - 2016
Modeling Photophysical Processes in Biomolecules. Energy Transfer in DNA and Photosystems
Principal Investigator: 
Javier Cerezo
Project type: 


This project is funded by the Spanish ``Fundacion Ramon Areces'' (XXVI Convocatoria Becas para Ampliación de Estudios en el Extranjero en Ciencias de la Vida y de la Materia), and it will be carried out in collaboration with Dr. Fabrizio Santoro at the Pisa Unit of ICCOM. The research project will be related with the development and implementation of efficient methods to simulate the photophysics of relevant biomolecules, such as DNA bases and photosynthetic pigments. Indeed, detailed spectroscopic and photodynamic information of these biologically important systems opens the door to enter into very promising therapeutic and biotechnological fields, such as the  the understanding the intrinsic mechanisms of ultra-fast radiationless decay of DNA nucleobases or the optimization of chemical systems able to harvest light and transform it into profitable (chemical) energy. To properly approach such an ambitious project, all the photophysical processes involved need to be clearly understood, which start from the absorption of light, accounting for boht the vibronic couplings within the solute and the interactions with the biological environment. To that end, state-of-the-art of computational electronic spectroscopy methods will be used and developed in the context of this project, which also aims at implementing them in a computational code, based on the current FCclasses, useful for a wide range of researchers. The complete understanding of the absorption properties provides an adequate starting point to approach the deactivation pathways, including the radiative (fluorescent and phosphorescent) and non-radiative decays, which will be approached by application of quantum dynamics techniques.  


J. CerezoF. Santoro