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Site-Specific Photo-oxidation of the Isolated Adenosine-5′-triphosphate Dianion Determined by Photoelectron Imaging

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journal contribution
posted on 15.09.2020, 20:29 by Maria Elena Castellani, Davide Avagliano, Leticia González, Jan R. R. Verlet
Photoelectron imaging of the isolated adenosine-5′-triphosphate dianion excited to the 1ππ* states reveals that electron emission is predominantly parallel to the polarization axis of the light and arises from subpicosecond electron tunneling through the repulsive Coulomb barrier (RCB). The computed RCB shows that the most probable electron emission site is on the amino group of adenine. This is consistent with the photoelectron imaging: excitation to the 1ππ* states leads to an aligned ensemble distributed predominantly parallel to the long axis of adenine; the subsequent electron tunneling site is along this axis; and the negatively charged phosphate groups guide the outgoing electron mostly along this axis at long range. Imaging of electron tunneling from polyanions combined with computational chemistry may offer a general route for probing the intrinsic photo-oxidation site and dynamics as well as the overall structure of complex isolated species.