Carbamoylphosphate requirement for synthesis of the active center of [NiFe]-hydrogenases

Athanasios Paschos, Richard S. Glass, August Böck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

83 Scopus citations


The iron of the binuclear active center of [NiFe]-hydrogenases carries two CN and one CO ligands which are thought to confer to the metal a low oxidation and/or spin state essential for activity. Based on the observation that one of the seven auxiliary proteins required for the synthesis and insertion of the [NiFe] cluster contains a sequence motif characteristic of O-carbamoyl-transferases it was discovered that carbamoyl phosphate is essential for formation of active [NiFe]-hydrogenases in vivo and is specifically required for metal center synthesis suggesting that it is the source of the CO and CN ligands. A chemical path for conversion of a carbamoyl group into cyano and carbonyl moieties is postulated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)9-12
Number of pages4
JournalFEBS Letters
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Jan 12 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Carbamoylphosphate
  • Cyano/carbonyl ligand
  • Metal center formation
  • [NiFe]-Hydrogenase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Structural Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cell Biology


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