Seminars & Discussions
Week beginning 4 December 2016
Monday 5 Dec 16 - 1:00pm
Title: 'Colloids as a model system for proteins at interfaces'
Rudi Mears (University of Edinburgh)
Proteins are a diverse class of polymers which are ubiquitous in nature. We aim to improve the understanding of how protein properties relate to their ensemble interfacial behaviour by employing colloids as a model system. In this talk I will describe my work on sterically stabilised poly(methyl methacrylate)(PMMA) particles at the water/dodecane interface, focusing on pendant drop tensiometry to probe the effect of changing particle size.
Friday 9 Dec 16 - 11:30am
Directed evolution of cytochrome c for carbon-silicon bond formation: Bringing silicon to life
Authors: S. B. Jennifer Kan, Russell D. Lewis, Kai Chen, Frances H. Arnold
Speaker: Clair-Marie Loudon
Enzymes that catalyze carbon-silicon bond formation are unknown in nature, despite the natural abundance of both elements. Such enzymes would expand the catalytic repertoire of biology, enabling living systems to access chemical space previously only open to synthetic chemistry.We have discovered that heme proteins catalyze the formation of organosilicon compounds under physiological conditions via carbene insertion into silicon-hydrogen bonds. The reaction proceeds both in vitro and in vivo, accommodating a broad range of substrates with high chemo- and enantioselectivity. Using directed evolution, we enhanced the catalytic function of cytochrome c from Rhodothermus marinus
to achieve more than 15-fold higher turnover than state-of-the-art synthetic catalysts. This carbon-silicon bond-forming biocatalyst offers an environmentally friendly and highly efficient route to producing enantiopure organosilicon molecules.
pages 1048-1051 (2016) pdf version
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