oa South African Journal of Chemistry - The Effect of Solvent on the Ligand Substitution Reactions of Aquacobalamin (Vitamin B)

Volume 59, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0379-4350



The kinetics of the substitution of coordinated HO in aquacobalamin (HOcbl+, vitamin B) by pyridine (py) were studied as a function of temperature in water and in 70% (v/v) ethanol-water at pH 7.0. Saturation kinetics is observed, in agreement with a dissociative interchange mechanism. The values of ∆H for the rate constant for interchange of HO and py are 80(2) and 99(8) kJ mol-1 in water and ethanol-water, respectively, while ∆S values are 47(8) and 106(27) J K-1 mol-1, respectively. There is a compensation effect between the two activation parameters which is interpreted in terms of the position of the transition state along the reaction coordinate. The transition state occurs later in an ethanol-water mixture, probably because the outer sphere complex that precedes the ligand exchange is less favoured than in pure water. Despite this compensation, the ligand substitution reaction is slower below about 50°C in the mixed-solvent system than in water. The present results, together with those previously reported by others, suggest that this may be a general feature of the ligand substitution reactions of HOcbl+ in mixed solvents.

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