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Preparation and characterization of an intramolecular electron transfer in a pentaammineruthenium derivative of Candida krisei cytochrome c

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  • Biology
  • Chemistry


A semisynthetic binuclear metalloprotein has been prepared by appending the pentaammineruthenium moiety to histidine 39 of the cytochrome c from the yeast Candida krusei. The site of ruthenium binding was identified by peptide mapping. Spectroscopic and electrochemical properties of the derivative indicate the protein conformation is unperturbed by the modification. A preliminary (minimum) rate constant of 170s^(-1) has been determined for the intramolecular electron transfer from ruthenium(II) to iron(III), which occurs over a distance of at least 13Å (barring major conformational changes). Electrochemical studies indicate that this reaction should proceed with a driving force of ~170mV. The rate constant is an order of magnitude faster than that observed in horse heart cytochrome c for intramolecular electron transfer from pentaammineruthenium(II)(histidine 33) to iron(III) (over a similar distance, and with a similar driving force), suggesting a medium or orientation effect makes the Candida intramolecular electron transfer more favorable.

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