Selective photoproduction of O2 from the Mn4O4 cubane core: A structural and functional model for the photosynthetic water-oxidizing complex

Masayuki Yagi, Kurt V. Wolf, Patrick J. Baesjou, Steven L. Bernasek, G. Charles Dismukes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Cores for thought! A new [Mn4O4]6+ "cubane" core complex (L6Mn4O4) with six facially bridging phosphinate chelate ligands (L=(MePh)2PO2) was synthesized. Photo-excitation releases molecular O2 by intramolecular coupling of two core oxygen atoms and selective rearrangement to a [Mn4O2]6+ "butterfly" core ([L5Mn4O2]+; see scheme). Thus the Mn4O4 cubane core exhibits unique reactivity in O2 evolution which may account for its presence in the photosynthetic enzyme.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2925-2928
Number of pages4
JournalAngewandte Chemie - International Edition
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - Aug 3 2001
Externally publishedYes


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Catalysis
  • Chemistry(all)


  • Cluster compounds
  • Manganese
  • Oxygen
  • Photosynthesis
  • Water oxidation

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