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© 2016, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. Main conclusion: Recent investigations have provided important new insights into the structures and functions of the extrinsic proteins of Photosystem II. This review is an update of the last major review on the extrinsic proteins of Photosystem II (Bricker et al., Biochemistry 31:4623–4628 2012). In this report, we will examine advances in our understanding of the structure and function of these components. These proteins include PsbO, which is uniformly present in all oxygenic organisms, the PsbU, PsbV, CyanoQ, and CyanoP proteins, found in the cyanobacteria, and the PsbP, PsbQ and PsbR proteins, found in the green plant lineage. These proteins serve to stabilize the Mn4CaO5 cluster and optimize oxygen evolution at physiological calcium and chloride concentrations. The mechanisms used to perform these functions, however, remain poorly understood. Recently, important new findings have significantly advanced our understanding of the structures, locations and functions of these important subunits. We will discuss the biochemical, structural and genetic studies that have been used to elucidate the roles played by these proteins within the photosystem and their locations within the photosynthetic complex. Additionally, we will examine open questions needing to be addressed to provide a coherent picture of the role of these components within the photosystem.

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