Organic Chemistry Seminar

Wednesday, April 21, 2021
12:00pm to 1:00pm
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Online Event
Photoenzymatic Catalysis - Using Light to Reveal New Enzyme Functions
Todd Hyster, Associate Professor, Chemistry & Chemical Biology, Cornell University,

Enzymes are exquisite catalysts for chemical synthesis, capable of providing unparalleled levels of chemo-, regio-, diastereo- and enantioselectivity. Unfortunately, biocatalysts are often limited to the reactivity patterns found in nature. In this talk, I will share my groups efforts to use light to expand the reactivity profile of enzymes. In our studies, we have exploited the photoexcited state of common biological cofactors, such as NADH and FMN to facilitate electron transfer to substrates bound within enzyme active sites. In other studies, we found that enzymes will electronically activate bound substrates for electron transfer. In the presence of common photoredox catalysts, this activation can be used to direct radical formation to enzyme active sites. Using these approaches, we are able to develop biocatalysts to solve long-standing selectivity challenges in chemical synthesis.

For more information, please contact Rena Becerra-Rasti by phone at 626-395-6151 or by email at [email protected].