Identification and spectroscopic characterization of nonheme iron(III) hypochlorite intermediates

FeIII-hypohalite complexes have been implicated in a wide range of important enzyme-catalyzed halogenation reactions including the biosynthesis of natural products and antibiotics and post-translational modification of proteins. The absence of spectroscopic data on such species precludes their identification. Herein, we report the generation and spectroscopic characterization of nonheme FeIII-hypohalite intermediates of possible relevance to iron halogenases. We show that FeIII-OCl polypyridylamine complexes can be sufficiently stable at room temperature to be characterized by UV/Vis absorption, resonance Raman and EPR spectroscopies, and cryo-ESIMS. DFT methods rationalize the pathways to the formation of the FeIII-OCl, and ultimately FeIV=O, species and provide indirect evidence for a short-lived FeII-OCl intermediate. The species observed and the pathways involved offer insight into and, importantly, a spectroscopic database for the investigation of iron halogenases ​
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