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2020: murburn concept heralds a new era in cellular bioenergetics

Daniel Andrew Gideon, Vivian David Jacob, Kelath Murali Manoj


Cellular bioenergetics has been interpreted for several decades using the Keilin-Mitchell-Boyer (KMB) model of oxidative phosphorylation (OxPhos), and for understanding/managing of the pertinent mitochondrial pathophysiological states. Although decades of research had revealed many faulty chemico-physical aspects of KMB perspective, recent critical insights from our group’s writings have sufficiently brought out the errors in the KMB model, rendering it obsolete/redundant. The murburn model proposed in lieu is a compelling alternative for explaining OxPhos because it reasons several facets of mitochondrial structure-function correlations, reaction chemistry and thermodynamics. However, the mitochondrial research community appears to be recalcitrant, and continues to follow the erstwhile erroneous ideas and not take cognizance of the new insights. Hence, we deemed it opportune to make a clarion call for a jettisoning of the superseded terminologies (or keywords) and concepts routinely used by researchers in this field. First, we present a statistical perspective of the usage of these terms in the past and recent times, to support our claims and call. Then, we articulate simplified arguments why the key elements/terms of the KMB model like “electron-transfer/electron-transport/respiratory chain”, “mitochondrial proton pumps”, “mitochondrial membrane po-tential”, “chemiosmosis”, “proton motive force” and “rotary ATP synthase/synthesis” violate scientific/semantic logic. Finally, we conclude with summative statements projecting the importance of our claims and call.


murburn concept, aerobic respiration, mitochondria, murzymes, electron transfer/transport chain, ETC complexes, proton motive force, chemiosmosis, rotary ATP synthase, mitochondrial membrane potential, mitochondrial proton pumps

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About The Authors

Daniel Andrew Gideon
The Science & Ethics Foundation, Snehatheeram, Kulappully, Shoranur-2, Kerala

Vivian David Jacob
The Science & Ethics Foundation, Snehatheeram, Kulappully, Shoranur-2, Kerala

Kelath Murali Manoj
The Science & Ethics Foundation, Snehatheeram, Kulappully, Shoranur-2, Kerala

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