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Artificial Metalloenzymes or tomorrow synthetic chemistry

Scientists from the IBS have recently developed a now approach combining protein crystallography and biomimetic chemistry to observe all the steps in oxygen activation, an essential reaction of life. In order to accomplish this, they have designed and crystallized an artificial metallo-enzyme consisting of a synthetic catalyst and a protein. The different states have been characterized by X-ray diffraction at the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility (ESRF). These results are an important step towards the design of artificial metallo-enzymes capable of synthetizing many industrially relevant molecules, both efficiently and at lower costs. This work, that opens new alternatives for a "green" chemistry approach has been published in the journal Nature Chemistry.

Crystallographic snapshots of the reaction of aromatic C–H with O2 catalysed by a proteinbound iron complex. Christine Cavazza, Constance Bochot, Pierre Rousselot-Pailley, Philippe Carpentier, Mickaël V. Cherrier, Lydie Martin, Caroline Marchi-Delapierre, Juan C. Fontecilla-Camps and Stéphane Ménage. Nature Chemistry, online, 2010.

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