The hybrid cluster protein (HCP; formerly termed the prismane protein) has been extensively studied due to its unique spectroscopic properties. Although the structural and spectroscopic characteristics are well defined, its enzymatic function, up to this point, has remained unidentified. While it was proposed that HCP acts in some step of nitrogen metabolism, a specific role for this enzyme remained unknown. Recent studies of HCP purified from Escherichia coli have identified a novel hydroxylamine reductase activity. These data reveal the ability of HCP to reduce hydroxylamine in vitro to form NH3 and H2O. Further biochemical analyses were completed in order to determine the effects of various electron donors, different pH levels, and the presence of CN− on in vitro hydroxylamine reduction.