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Three mechanistic probes were used to investigate whether the Criegee rearrangement step of catechol 1,2-dioxygenase (CatA) from Acinetobacter sp. proceeds via a direct 1,2-acyl migration, via homolytic O-O cleavage, or via a benzene oxide-oxepin rearrangement. Incubation of CatA with 3-chloroperoxybenzoic acid led to the formation of a 9:1 mixture of 2-chlorophenol and 3-chlorophenol, via a mechanism involving O-O homolytic cleavage. Incubation of CatA with 2-hydroperoxy-2-methylcyclohexanone led to formation of 5,6-diketoheptan-1-ol, also consistent with an O-O homolytic cleavage mechanism, and not consistent with a direct 1,2-acyl migration. No reaction product was isolated from incubation of CatA with 6-hydroxymethyl-6-methylcyclohexa-2,4-dienone, an analogue that is able to undergo the benzene oxide-oxepin rearrangement, but not able to undergo O-O homolytic cleavage. In contrast, incubation of extradiol dioxygenase MhpB from Escherichia coli with 6-hydroxymethyl-6-methylcyclohexa-2,4-dienone led to the formation of a 2-tropolone ring expansion product, consistent with a direct 1,2-alkenyl migration for extradiol cleavage. Taken together, the results imply different mechanisms for the Criegee rearrangement steps of intradiol and extradiol catechol dioxygenases: a direct 1,2-alkenyl migration for extradiol cleavage and an O-O homolytic cleavage mechanism for intradiol cleavage.


Meite Xin, Timothy D H Bugg. Evidence from mechanistic probes for distinct hydroperoxide rearrangement mechanisms in the intradiol and extradiol catechol dioxygenases. Journal of the American Chemical Society. 2008 Aug 6;130(31):10422-30

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PMID: 18627158

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