Aryloxyalkanoate dioxygenases are unique herbicide biodegrading nonheme iron enzymes found in plants and hence, from environmental and agricultural point of view they are important and valuable. However, they often are substrate specific and little is known on the details of the mechanism and the substrate scope. To this end, we created enzyme models and calculate the mechanism for 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid biodegradation and 2-methyl substituted analogs by density functional theory. The work shows that the substrate binding is tight and positions the aliphatic group close to the metal center to enable a chemoselective reaction mechanism to form the C2-hydroxy products, whereas the aromatic hydroxylation barriers are well higher in energy. Subsequently, we investigated the metabolism of R- and S-methyl substituted inhibitors and show that these do not react as efficiently as 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid substrate due to stereochemical clashes in the active site and particularly for the R-isomer give high rebound barriers.
Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms
- Manchester Institute of Biotechnology