Broadening the substrate scope of strictosidine synthases by site-directed mutagenesis

Conference Dates

September 24-28, 2017


The condensation of ß-arylethylamines with carbonyl compounds (Pictet-Spengler reaction) is employed in the synthesis of tetrahydro-β-carboline and isoquinoline scaffolds which are common motifs in many naturally occurring alkaloids. These compounds exhibit a range of biological activities and are thus interesting targets for organic synthesis and medicinal chemistry.

Nature’s equivalent to the Pictet-Spengler reaction is catalyzed by the so called Pictet-Spenglerases. Within this class of enzymes, strictosidine synthases (STRs, EC have attracted attention [1-4]. These enzymes catalyse the formation of the 1,2,3,4-tetrahydro-β-carboline (S)-strictosidine, a key intermediate in the monoterpenoid indole alkaloid biosynthetic pathway in higher plants.

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