Document Type



Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor's Name

Xiaotang Wang

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Fenfei Leng

Third Advisor's Name

Watson Lees

Fourth Advisor's Name

Kathleen Rein

Fifth Advisor's Name

Lidia Kos


NMR, Heme, P450cam, Chloroperoxidase, Soybean Peroxidase

Date of Defense



Hemoproteins are a very important class of enzymes in nature sharing the essentially same prosthetic group, heme, and are good models for exploring the relationship between protein structure and function. Three important hemoproteins, chloroperoxidase (CPO), horseradish peroxidase (HRP), and cytochrome P450cam (P450cam), have been extensively studied as archetypes for the relationship between structure and function. In this study, a series of 1D and 2D NMR experiments were successfully conducted to contribute to the structural studies of these hemoproteins.

During the epoxidation of allylbenzene, CPO is converted to an inactive green species with the prosthetic heme modified by addition of the alkene plus an oxygen atom forming a five-membered chelate ring. Complete assignment of the NMR resonances of the modified porphyrin extracted and demetallated from green CPO unambiguously established the structure of this porphyrin as an NIII-alkylated product. A novel substrate binding motif of CPO was proposed from this concluded regiospecific N-alkylation structure.

Soybean peroxidase (SBP) is considered as a more stable, more abundant and less expensive substitute of HRP for industrial applications. A NMR study of SBP using 1D and 2D NOE methods successfully established the active site structure of SBP and consequently fills in the blank of the SBP NMR study. All of the hyperfine shifts of the SBP-CN- complex are unambiguously assigned together with most of the prosthetic heme and all proximal His170 resonances identified. The active site structure of SBP revealed by this NMR study is in complete agreement with the recombinant SBP crystal structure and is highly similar to that of the HRP with minor differences.

The NMR study of paramagnetic P450cam had been greatly restricted for a long time. A combination of 2D NMR methods was used in this study for P450cam-CN- complexes with and without camphor bound. The results lead to the first unequivocal assignments of all heme hyperfine-shifted signals, together with certain correlated diamagnetic resonances. The observed alternation of the assigned novel proximal cysteine β-CH2 resonances induced by camphor binding indicated a conformational change near the proximal side.





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