NADPH: adrenodoxin reductase (E.C. 18.104.22.168) and its complex with adrenodoxin catalyze the aerobic oxidation of NADPH by a number of substituted 2-nitrofurans, 5-nitroimidazoles and p-derivatives of nitrobenzene. The nitrocompounds are reduced via an initial single-electron transfer. Under anaerobic conditions nitrofurans are reduced to the corresponding amines. The rate constants of adrenodoxin oxidation by nitrocompounds vary from 4 x 10(5) to 3 x 10(2) M-1 s-1. A linear correlation between the rate constant logarithm and the single-electron reduction potential at pH 7.0 (E7(1)) of nitrocompounds was observed. The relation between the reactivity and the polarographic half-wave potential (E7(1/2)) is distorted. The reactivity of adrenodoxin reductase is two orders of magnitude lower than that of adrenodoxin.