Catalytic Cyclopropanation by Myoglobin Reconstituted with Iron Porphycene: Acceleration of Catalysis due to Rapid Formation of the Carbene Species
Myoglobin reconstituted with iron porphycene catalyzes the cyclopropanation of styrene with ethyl diazoacetate. Compared to native myoglobin, the reconstituted protein significantly accelerates the catalytic reaction and the kcat/Km value is 26-fold enhanced. Mechanistic studies indicate that the reaction of the reconstituted protein with ethyl diazoacetate is 615-fold faster than that of native myoglobin. The metallocarbene species reacts with styrene with the apparent second-order kinetic constant of 28 mM–1 s–1 at 25 °C. Complementary theoretical studies support efficient carbene formation by the reconstituted protein that results from the strong ligand field of the porphycene and fewer intersystem crossing steps relative to the native protein. From these findings, the substitution of the cofactor with an appropriate metal complex serves as an effective way to generate a new biocatalyst.