Direct electron transfer kinetics in horseradish peroxidase electrocatalysis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The study of direct electron transfer between enzymes and electrodes is frequently hampered by the small fraction of adsorbed proteins that remains electrochemically active. Here, we outline a strategy to overcome this limitation, which is based on a hierarchical analysis of steady-state electrocatalytic currents and the adoption of the "binary activity" hypothesis. The procedure is illustrated by studying the electrocatalytic response of horseradish peroxidase (HRP) adsorbed on graphite electrodes as a function of substrate (hydrogen peroxide) concentration, electrode potential, and solution pH. Individual contributions of the rates of substrate/enzyme reaction and of the electrode/enzyme electron exchange to the observed catalytic currents were disentangled by taking advantage of their distinct dependence on substrate concentration and electrode potential. In the absence of nonturnover currents, adoption of the "binary activity" hypothesis provided values of the standard electron-transfer rate constant for reduction of HRP Compound II that are similar to those reported previously for reduction of cytochrome c peroxidase Compound II. The variation of the catalytic currents with applied potential was analyzed in terms of the non-adiabatic Marcus-DOS electron transfer theory. The availability of a broad potential window, where catalytic currents could be recorded, facilitates an accurate determination of both the reorganization energy and the maximum electron-transfer rate for HRP Compound II reduction. The variation of these two kinetic parameters with solution pH provides some indication of the nature and location of the acid/base groups that control the electronic exchange between enzyme and electrode.


  • Rafael Andreu
  • Elena Ferapontova
  • Lo Gorton
  • Juan Jose Calvente
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Analytical Chemistry
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)469-477
JournalThe Journal of Physical Chemistry Part B
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2007
Publication categoryResearch

Bibliographic note

The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015. The record was previously connected to the following departments: Analytical Chemistry (S/LTH) (011001004)