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My bioinorganic and redox chemistry isn't up to par and I'm having a very difficult time understanding the chemical mechanism behind cystine bond formation. Most reactive environments are actually reductive whereas an oxidative environment is important for cystine bond formation. How does the oxidative environment oxidize the thiols, rearrange the orbitals and form a disulfide bond?

Cystine bond

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Orbital rearrangement, etc, seems to be a bit of stretch for this site. –  Daniel Standage Feb 27 '12 at 19:59
    
@DanielStandage: why? Biochemistry is definitely on topic –  nico Feb 27 '12 at 22:01
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@bobthejoe: why do you think oxydation of the thiols is peculiar? In other words what would be so "special" about the "environment", and of which environment are we talking about? –  nico Feb 27 '12 at 22:01
    
I hope that biochemistry is on topic. Most reactive environments are actually reductive. An oxidative environment (via a periplasm or a chaperone) is important for cystine bond formation. I'm just curious about how those conditions are regulated. I hope that is clear. –  bobthejoe Feb 27 '12 at 22:37
    
@bobthejoe: OK, now I get your point. I don't have a precise answer, but I would like to hear one! –  nico Feb 28 '12 at 7:31

1 Answer 1

If your question is with respect to a eukaryotic cell, the di-sulfide bridge/bond is formed in the rough endoplasmic reticulum which is an oxidative environment (unlike most other organelles which are reductive). This paper may be of relevance to you:

Pathways for protein disulphide bond formation - Frand et al, Trends Cell Biol. 2000 May;10(5):203-10.

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