Benzoquinones, naphthoquinones and aziridinylbenzoquinones, can be reduced by flavoproteins to semiquinones that react with molecular oxygen to form superoxide anion with the subsequent regeneration of the parent compounds. This redox cycling, a form of futile metabolism, produces reactive oxygen species and depletes the reducing equivalents of cells without concomitant energy production. The ability of a toxicant to redox cycle is related to its one-electron reduction potential, and this study attempted to estimate reduction potential from structure using semi-empirical quantum chemical models for a diverse set of chemicals. The results of this study suggest that one-electron reduction potentials, within structural classes of benzoquinones, naphthoquinones, phenols and nitrobenzenes, can be estimated from local and global electronic indices that are related to delocalization. Smaller absolute charge on the carbonyl carbon in the quinone moiety correlated with more positive one-electron reduction potentials of 1,4-benzoquinones, naphthoquinones and two-electron reduction potentials of aziridinylbenzoquinones. The energy of frontier orbitals of the quinones, phenols and nitrobenzenes also co-varied with reduction potential. More positive reduction potentials of 1,4-benzoquinones, 1,4-naphthoquinones and phenols were correlated with more negative values of EHOMO, while more negative values of ELUMO were correlated with more positive potentials of nitrobenzenes and aziridinylbenzoquinones. Delocalization of electron density also correlated with reduction potentials within individual classes.
- one-electron reduction potential,
- redox cycling
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/steven_bradbury/29/