Control of O 2 versus CO binding in myoglobin (Mb) is tuned by a distal histidine residue through steric and H-bonding interactions. These interactions have been evaluated via Car-Parrinello DFT calculations, whose efficiency allows full quantum mechanical treatment of the 13 closest residues surrounding the heme. The small (8°) deviation of the Fe-C-O bond angle from linearity results from the steric influence of a distal valine residue and not the distal histidine. H-bond energies were evaluated by replacing the distal histidine with the non-H-bonding residue isoleucine. Binding energies for CO and O 2 decreased by 0.8 and 4.1 kcal/ mol for MbCO and MbO 2, in good agreement with experimental H-bond estimates. Ligand discrimination is dominated by distal histidine H-bonding, which is also found to stabilize a metastable side-on isomer of MbO 2 that may play a key role in MbO 2 photodynamics.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films
- Materials Chemistry