Banner image - Wikipedia's initial step of the Calvin cycle

NSF's Peer-Review Standard

Proposals sponsored by university foundations for NSF funding of basic research in plant photosynthesis are peer reviewed. 

The peer-review standard is based on the Calvin cycle, one of dark carbon reactions, in which the carbon dioxide from the air is reduced to the sugar level by reducing and energy-rich agents generated by chlorophyll light reactions.      

I. Making of the Calvin Cycle

In photosynthesis, Reaction (L) is the direct, noncyclic reduction, in the light, of carbon in the presence of light and water to yield organic fuels.  

Unlike Reaction (L), in the Calvin cycle, the 6-C intermediate undergoes a hydrolytic splitting into two molecules of PGA, reaction (D), the carboxydismutase reaction, Fig.1.

Fig.1. Reaction (D): Hydrolytic splitting of 6-C intermediate into PGA

II. The Z Scheme

The PGA is then reduced by the NADPH and ATP from the Z scheme, Fig.2.  The combined Calvin cycle and the Z scheme make up the Grand Dark Ponzi Reaction, the GDPR peer review standard for funding all photosynthesis research in this country.  In Fig.2, the energy of light is measured, not in electron volts, but "emfs at pH7." So the "light reactions" in the Z scheme are also "dark," in that emfs are the free energy units for redox reactions, which occur in the dark.  


Fig.2. Govindjee's Z scheme, in which light is measured in units of "emf at pH7."

From NSF funding of dark photosynthesis research arose NSF-funded centers for bioenergetics and photosynthesis, in a publicity-driven world center for federal funding of worthless programs hailed as "pioneering research for important social benefits."  Billions of federal tax dollars are paid out to sustain the unsustainable growth of money demands of the GDPR. 

Two photosystems are required in Fig.2, it is said, because red light in a single chlorophyll system does not carry "sufficient emf at Ph7" to split water and reduce carbon dioxide to the sugar oxidation level.  For this reason, Fong et al's in vitro demonstration using a single chlorophyll system of the water-splitting and carbon reduction in red light, Fig. 3, serves a useful purpose.    

Fig.3. Red-light Chl a water-splitting and carbon-reduction reactions.

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