pMMO (particulate methane mono-oxygenase) is an integral membrane metalloenzyme that catalyses the oxidation of methane to methanol. The pMMO metal active site has not been identified, precluding detailed investigation of the reaction mechanism. Models for the metal centres proposed by various research groups have evolved as crystallographic and spectroscopic data have become available. The present review traces the evolution of these active-site models before and after the 2005 Methylococcus capsulatus (Bath) pMMO crystal structure determination.

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