High-valent nonheme iron-oxo complexes: Synthesis, structure, and spectroscopy

Aidan R. McDonald, Lawrence Que

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

413 Scopus citations


High-valent iron-oxo intermediates have often been implicated, and in some cases identified, as the active oxidant in oxygen activating nonheme iron enzymes. Recent synthetic efforts have yielded pivotal insights into the generation of oxoiron(IV and V) complexes, and allowed thorough investigation of their spectroscopic, structural, and electronic properties. Furthermore, insight into the mechanisms by which nonheme iron sites activate dioxygen to yield high valent iron-oxo intermediates has been obtained. This review covers the great successes in iron-oxo chemistry over the past decade, detailing various efforts to obtain iron-oxo complexes in high yield, and to delve into their diverse structural and spectroscopic properties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)414-428
Number of pages15
JournalCoordination Chemistry Reviews
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 5 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by a grant from the US National Science Foundation ( CHE1058248 to L.Q.).


  • Bioinorganic chemistry
  • Dioxygen activation
  • Iron-oxo complexes
  • Nonheme iron


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