The Metal-Thiolate Clusters of Plant Metallothioneins


  • Eva Freisinger University of Zürich, Institute of Inorganic Chemistry, Winterthurerstrasse 190, CH-8057 Zürich;, Email:



Bioinorganic chemistry, Lmct bands, Metal-thiolate cluster, Plant metallothioneins, Spectroscopy


While structures of mammalian metallothioneins and their metal-thiolate clusters have been known for nearly 20 years, the first three-dimensional structure of a plant metallothionein was only published very recently. Also in other aspects, research on plant metallothioneins lags behind what is known about the vertebrate forms. However, in the past years more and more information, mostly based on experiments performed with optical spectroscopy has become available and permit sometimes unforeseen insights. In the following, the different experimental strategies applied in our laboratory will be described together with the progress we have made over the past years in detecting and characterizing the metal-thiolate clusters of plant metallothioneins.