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Oxidation half-reaction of aqueous nucleosides and nucleotides via photoelectron spectroscopy augmented by ab initio calculations

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Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)201-209
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Volume137
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jan 2015
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Abstract

Oxidative damage to DNA and hole transport between nucleobases in oxidized DNA are important processes in lesion formation for which surprisingly poor thermodynamic data exist, the relative ease of oxidizing the four nucleobases being one such example. Theoretical simulations of radiation damage and charge transport in DNA depend on accurate values for vertical ionization energies (VIEs), reorganization energies, and standard reduction potentials. Liquid-jet photoelectron spectroscopy can be used to directly study the oxidation half-reaction. The VIEs of nucleic acid building blocks are measured in their native buffered aqueous environment. The experimental investigation of purine and pyrimidine nucleotides, nucleosides, pentose sugars, and inorganic phosphate demonstrates that photoelectron spectra of nucleotides arise as a spectral sum over their individual chemical components; that is, the electronic interactions between each component are effectively screened from one another by water. Electronic structure theory affords the assignment of the lowest energy photoelectron band in all investigated nucleosides and nucleotides to a single ionizing transition centered solely on the nucleobase. Thus, combining the measured VIEs with theoretically determined reorganization energies allows for the spectroscopic determination of the one-electron redox potentials that have been difficult to establish via electrochemistry.