Hydrogen activation by biomimetic [NiFe]-hydrogenase model containing protected cyanide cofactors

Brian C. Manor, Thomas B. Rauchfuss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Described are experiments demonstrating incorporation of cyanide cofactors and hydride substrate into [NiFe]-hydrogenase (H2ase) active site models. Complexes of the type (CO)2(CN)2Fe(pdt)Ni(dxpe) (dxpe = dppe, 1; dxpe = dcpe, 2) bind the Lewis acid B(C6F 5)3 (BArF3) to give the adducts (CO)2(CNBArF3)2Fe(pdt)Ni(dxpe), (1(BArF3)2, 2(BArF3) 2). Upon decarbonylation using amine oxides, these adducts react with H2 to give hydrido derivatives [(CO)(CNBArF 3)2Fe(H)(pdt)Ni(dxpe)]- (dxpe = dppe, [H3(BArF3)2]-; dxpe = dcpe, [H4(BArF3)2]-). Crystallographic analysis shows that Et4N[H3(BArF3)2] generally resembles the active site of the enzyme in the reduced, hydride-containing states (Ni-C/R). The Fe-H⋯Ni center is unsymmetrical with rFe-H = 1.51(3) Å and rNi-H = 1.71(3) Å. Both crystallographic and 19F NMR analyses show that the CNBAr F3- ligands occupy basal and apical sites. Unlike cationic Ni-Fe hydrides, [H3(BArF3) 2]- and [H4(BArF3)2] - oxidize at mild potentials, near the Fc+/0 couple. Electrochemical measurements indicate that in the presence of base, [H3(BAr F3)2]- catalyzes the oxidation of H2. NMR evidence indicates dihydrogen bonding between these anionic hydrides and R3NH+ salts, which is relevant to the mechanism of hydrogenogenesis. In the case of Et4N[H3(BAr F3)2], strong acids such as HCl induce H 2 release to give the chloride Et4N[(CO)(CNBAr F3)2Fe(Cl)(pdt)Ni(dppe)].

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)11895-11900
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number32
StatePublished - Aug 14 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry

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