Biocatalytic routes to stereo-divergent iridoids

Néstor J. Hernández Lozada, Benke Hong, Joshua C. Wood, Lorenzo Caputi, Jérôme Basquin, Ling Chuang, Maritta Kunert, Carlos E. Rodríguez López, Chloe Langley, Dongyan Zhao, C. Robin Buell, Benjamin R. Lichman, Sarah E. O’Connor*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Thousands of natural products are derived from the fused cyclopentane-pyran molecular scaffold nepetalactol. These natural products are used in an enormous range of applications that span the agricultural and medical industries. For example, nepetalactone, the oxidized derivative of nepetalactol, is known for its cat attractant properties as well as potential as an insect repellent. Most of these naturally occurring nepetalactol-derived compounds arise from only two out of the eight possible stereoisomers, 7S-cis-trans and 7R-cis-cis nepetalactols. Here we use a combination of naturally occurring and engineered enzymes to produce seven of the eight possible nepetalactol or nepetalactone stereoisomers. These enzymes open the possibilities for biocatalytic production of a broader range of iridoids, providing a versatile system for the diversification of this important natural product scaffold.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4718
Number of pages13
JournalNature Communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 11 Aug 2022

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