Selective catalysis with peptide dendrimers

  • Douat-Casassus C
  • Darbre T
  • Reymond J
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Peptide dendrimers incorporating 3,5-diaminobenzoic acid 1 as a branching unit (B) were prepared by solid-phase synthesis of ((Ac-A(3))(2)B-A(2))(2)B-Cys-A(1)-NH(2) followed by disulfide bridge formation. Twenty-one homo- and heterodimeric dendrimers were obtained by permutations of aspartate, histidine, and serine at positions A(1), A(2), and A(3). Two dendrimers catalyzed the hydrolysis of 7-hydroxy-N-methyl-quinolinium esters (2-5), and two other dendrimers catalyzed the hydrolysis of 8-hydroxy-pyrene-1,3,6-trisulfonate esters (10-12). Enzyme-like kinetics was observed in aqueous buffer pH 6.0 with multiple turnover, substrate binding (K(M) = 0.1-0.5 mM), rate acceleration (k(cat)/k(uncat) > 10(3)), and chiral discrimination (E = 2.8 for 2-phenylpropionate ester 5). The role of individual amino acids in catalysis was investigated by amino acid exchanges, highlighting the key role of histidine as a catalytic residue, and the importance of electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions in modulating substrate binding. These experiments demonstrate for the first time selective catalysis in peptide dendrimers.

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  • Céline Douat-Casassus

  • Tamis Darbre

  • Jean Louis Reymond

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