Volume 92 Issue 5 | p. 8 | News of The Week
Issue Date: February 3, 2014 | Web Date: January 30, 2014

Enzyme Makes Tough-To-Construct C–N Bonds

Chemical Biology: Halogenase directly adds nitrite or azide to unactivated aliphatic carbons
Department: Science & Technology
News Channels: Biological SCENE, Organic SCENE
Keywords: nitration, azidation, enzyme

The ability to add nitrogen-containing functional groups to unactivated aliphatic carbon atoms is a challenge for synthetic chemists. The search for enzymes to catalyze such reactions has likewise come up empty-handed. That luck, however, might be about to change.

Chemists at Pennsylvania State University have discovered that an enzyme that usually adds chloride ions to aliphatic carbons can be made to add nitrite or azide ions instead (Nat. Chem. Biol. 2014, DOI: . . .

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