Letter | Published:

Radiation-induced Oxidation of Cytosine and Uracil in Aqueous Solution of Copper (II)

Nature volume 212, pages 394395 (22 October 1966) | Download Citation

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Abstract

BOTH the hydrated electron, e aq, and the hydroxyl radical, OH, which are formed as the principal intermediates in water radiolysis, react rapidly with the pyrimidine bases through preferential addition to the 5, 6 double bond to give the hydropyrimidyl radical, BH, and the hydroxypyrimidyl radical, BOH, respectively1–4. The yields for base destruction (molecules/100 eV) in oxygen-free solutions under γ-rays are, however, consistently low, G(−B)  1 (refs. 5 and 6), when compared with primary yields of the radical species derived from water, Ge aq = 2.85, G OH = 2.4 (ref. 7); recent work indicates that secondary reactions of BH and BOH lead to regeneration of the parent compound4. In oxygen-saturated solutions, e aq, is scavenged by oxygen to form O 2(HO2), the regeneration reaction is quenched, and the yield for base destruction increases to G(−B)2 through reactions involving the peroxy radical, B(OH)2. Many organic products are formed, however, from the intermediate, B(OH)2, and the overall product stoichiometries have yet to be fully elucidated8.

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Affiliations

  1. Lawrence Radiation Laboratory, University of California, Berkeley, California.

    • JOHN HOLIAN
    •  & WARREN M. GARRISON

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https://doi.org/10.1038/212394b0

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