Metallocenter assembly of the hydrogenase enzymes

Curr Opin Chem Biol. 2007 Apr;11(2):159-65. doi: 10.1016/j.cbpa.2007.01.011. Epub 2007 Feb 1.


The biosynthesis of the [NiFe]- and [FeFe]-hydrogenase enzymes requires the activities of multiple proteins that assemble the intricate metallocenters on the enzyme precursor proteins in an energy-dependent process. These accessory proteins include enzymes that synthesize the non-protein iron ligands as well as metallochaperones for the delivery of nickel to the [NiFe]-hydrogenase. Over the past few years many of these proteins have been examined in vitro. The biochemical properties, in the context of the earlier genetic studies, provide a basis for assigning function to the individual accessory proteins and mapping out the sequential steps of the metallocenter assembly pathways. This framework will serve as a foundation for detailed mechanistic analysis of these complex biomolecular factories.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Hydrogenase / chemistry*
  • Iron-Sulfur Proteins / chemistry*
  • Molecular Structure


  • Iron-Sulfur Proteins
  • iron hydrogenase
  • nickel-iron hydrogenase
  • Hydrogenase