The di-haem cytochrome c peroxidase of Paracoccus denitrificans is a calcium binding dimer of 37.5 kDa subunits. It is responsible for reduction of H2O2 to H2O with oxidation of cytochrome c550 and is isolated in a fully oxidised state (inactive) in which one haem (centre I) is in a high- spin/low-spin equilibrium and high potential and the other (centre II) is low-spin and low potential. The enzyme undergoes direct electron transfer (without the need for mediators) with a 4,4'-dithiodipyridine-modified gold electrode and the response of both haem groups can be observed. By combination of the cyclic and pulse voltammetric data with the established spectroscopic information, it was demonstrated that entry of one electron to the high potential haem leads (in a mechanism involving strong haem-haem interactions) to a complex change of spin states and redox potentials of both haems in order to attain a 'ready state' for binding, reduction and cleavage of the hydrogen peroxide. In the absence of endogenous calcium, haem communication can be completely disconnected and is recovered only when Ca2+ is added, an essential step for the formation of the peroxidatic site. The intricate electrochemical behaviour of this enzyme was interpreted as a mechanism involving, both reduction and oxidation of the high potential haem, an interfacial electron transfer coupled to a homogenous chemical reaction (EC mechanism). We discuss two different models for the sequence of events leading to the appearance of the active pentacoordinated peroxidatic haem.
- Cytochrome c peroxidase
- Spin and redox changes