S K-edge X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) was used to study the [Fe4S4] clusters in the DNA repair glycosylases EndoIII and MutY to evaluate the effects of DNA binding and solvation on Fe-S bond covalencies (i.e., the amount of S 3p character mixed into the Fe 3d valence orbitals). Increased covalencies in both iron-thiolate and iron-sulfide bonds would stabilize the oxidized state of the [Fe4S4] clusters. The results are compared to those on previously studied [Fe4S4] model complexes, ferredoxin (Fd), and to new data on high-potential iron-sulfur protein (HiPIP). A limited decrease in covalency is observed upon removal of solvent water from EndoIII and MutY, opposite to the significant increase observed for Fd, where the [Fe4S4] cluster is solvent exposed. Importantly, in EndoIII and MutY, a large increase in covalency is observed upon DNA binding, which is due to the effect of its negative charge on the iron-sulfur bonds. In EndoIII, this change in covalency can be quantified and makes a significant contribution to the observed decrease in reduction potential found experimentally in DNA repair proteins, enabling their HiPIP-like redox behavior.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Colloid and Surface Chemistry