Bacteriochlorophylls are photosynthetic pigments that occur in various phototrophic bacteria. They were discovered by C. B. van Niel in 1932 . They are related to chlorophylls, which are the primary pigments in plants, algae, and cyanobacteria. Groups that contain bacteriochlorophyll conduct photosynthesis, but do not produce oxygen. They use wavelengths of light not absorbed by plants or Cyanobacteria. Different groups contain different types of bacteriochlorophyll:
Bacteriochlorophylls a, b, and g are bacteriochlorins, meaning their molecules have a bacteriochlorin macrocycle ring with two reduced pyrrole rings (B and D). Bacteriochlorophylls c, d, e, and f are chlorins, meaning their molecules have a chlorin macrocycle ring with one reduced pyrrole ring (D).
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