Supramolecular control of monooxygenase reactivity in a copper(ii) cryptate†
We report a detailed investigation of the formation and self-decomposition of Cu(II)–hydroperoxo intermediates under the influence of second-coordination-sphere features provided by a cryptand. In solution, an equilibrium between two copper complexes with square-planar and square-pyramidal geometries was identified. Upon addition of H2O2/Et3N, two copper(II)–hydroperoxo intermediates formed at different rates. Their decomposition via self-oxidation was probed by deuterating select positions on the cryptand. This led to a small kinetic isotope effect of 1.5. Mass spectrometry analysis of the demetallated organic products is consistent with a direct oxygen-atom transfer to a tertiary amine on the cryptand, forming an N-oxide, unlike other models of copper mononuclear monooxygenase enzymes.