Catechol 1,2-dioxygenase (CTD) and protocatechuate 3,4-dioxygenase (PCD) are bacterial non-heme iron enzymes, which catalyse the oxidative cleavage of catechols tocis, cis-muconic acids with the incorporation of molecular oxygen via a mechanism involving a high-spin ferric centre. The iron(III) complexes of tripodal phenolate ligands containing N3O and N2O2 donor sets represent the metal binding region of the iron proteins. In our laboratory iron(III) complexes of mono- and bisphenolate ligands have been studied successfully as structural and functional models for the intradiol-cleaving catechol dioxygenase enzymes. The single crystal X-ray crystal structures of four of the complexes have been determined. One of thebis-phenolato complexes contains a FeN2O2Cl chromophore with a novel trigonal bipyramidal coordination geometry. The Fe-O-C bond angle of 136.1‡ observed for one of the iron(III) complex of a monophenolate ligand is very similar to that in the enzymes. The importance of the nearby sterically demanding coordinated -NMe2 group has been established and implies similar stereochemical constraints from the other ligated amino acid moieties in the 3,4-PCD enzymes, the enzyme activity of which is traced to the difference in the equatorial and axial Fe-O(tyrosinate) bonds (Fe-O-C, 133, 148‡). The nature of heterocyclic rings of the ligands and the methyl substituents on them regulate the electronic spectral features, FeIII/FeII redox potentials and catechol cleavage activity of the complexes. Upon interacting with catecholate anions, two catecholate to iron(III) charge transfer bands appear and the low energy band is similar to that of catechol dioxygenase-substrate complex. Four of the complexes catalyze the oxidative cleavage of H2DBC by molecular oxygen to yield intradiol cleavage products. Remarkably, the more basic N-methylimidazole ring in one of the complexes facilitates the rate-determining productreleasing phase of the catalytic reaction. The present study provides support to the novel substrate activation mechanism proposed for the intradiol-cleavage enzymes.
Volume 134, 2022
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