Macrocyclic intermediates in the biosynthesis of porphyrins

Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences
A H JacksonS G Smith


The hepta-, hexa- and penta-carboxylic porphyrins found in the faeces of rats poisoned with hexachlorobenzene have been separated by high-pressure liquid chromatography and characterized largely by spectroscopie methods. Their structures were confirmed by total synthesis, as part of a programme in which eleven of the fourteen hepta-, hexa- and penta-carboxylic porphyrins derived from uroporphyrin III have now been synthesized as their methyl esters. The four isomeric heptacarboxylic and three of the pentacarboxylic porphyrinogens have been incubated with haemolysates of chicken erythrocytes, and they are all converted into protoporphyrin IX but at different rates. On the basis of this and other evidence we conclude that the decarboxylation of uroporphyrinogen III to coproporphyrinogen III is a stepwise process taking place by a preferred pathway (both in normal and abnormal metabolism); the acetic acid groups are decarboxylated in a sequential clockwise fashion starting with that on the D ring and followed by those on the A, B and C rings. In the poisoned rats the uroporphyrinogen decarboxylase enzyme (or group of enzymes) is probably partially inhibited and the pentacarboxylic porphyrinogen with an acetic acid group on ring C ...Continue Reading


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Related Concepts

Disorders of Porphyrin Metabolism
Uroporphyrinogen III
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