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Contribution to book (peer-reviewed)

Book Methods in Enzymology: Measurements of Enzyme Isotope Effects
Editor , Harris Michael; , Anderson Vernon
Publisher Elsevier, Amsterdam
Title of proceedings Methods in Enzymology: Measurements of Enzyme Isotope Effects
DOI 10.1016/bs.mie.2017.06.044


Enzymatic oxygenations are among the most important biodegradation and detoxification reactions of organic pollutants. In the environment, however, such natural attenuation processes are extremely difficult to monitor. Changes of stable isotope ratios of aromatic pollutants at natural isotopic abundances serve as proxies for isotope effects associated with oxygenation reactions. Such isotope fractionations offer new avenues for revealing the pathway and extent of pollutant transformation and provide new insights into the mechanisms of catalysis by Rieske non-heme ferrous iron oxygenases. Based on compound-specific C, H, N, and O isotope analysis, we present a comprehensive methodology with which isotope effects can be derived from the isotope fractionation measured in substates, the co-substrate O2, and organic oxygenation products. We use dioxygenation of nitrobenzene and 2-nitrotoluene by nitrobenzene dioxygenase as illustrative examples to introduce different mathematical procedures for deriving apparent substrate and product isotope effects. We present two experimental approaches to control reactant and product turnover for isotope fractionation analysis in experimental systems containing purified enzymes, E. coli clones, and pure strains of environmental microorganisms. Finally, we present instrumental procedures and sample treatment instructions for analysis of C, H, and N isotope analysis in organic compounds and O isotope analysis in aqueous O2 by gas and liquid chromatography coupled to isotope ratio mass spectrometry.