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Engineering an enantioselective amine oxidase for the synthesis of pharmaceutical building blocks and alkaloid natural products

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JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
DatePublished - 24 Jul 2013
Issue number29
Volume135
Number of pages7
Pages (from-to)10863-10869
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

The development of cost-effective and sustainable catalytic methods for the production of enantiomerically pure chiral amines is a key challenge facing the pharmaceutical and fine chemical industries. This challenge is highlighted by the estimate that 40-45% of drug candidates contain a chiral amine, fueling a demand for broadly applicable synthetic methods that deliver target structures in high yield and enantiomeric excess. Herein we describe the development and application of a "toolbox" of monoamine oxidase variants from Aspergillus niger (MAO-N) which display remarkable substrate scope and tolerance for sterically demanding motifs, including a new variant, which exhibits high activity and enantioselectivity toward substrates containing the aminodiphenylmethane (benzhydrylamine) template. By combining rational structure-guided engineering with high-throughput screening, it has been possible to expand the substrate scope of MAO-N to accommodate amine substrates containing bulky aryl substituents. These engineered MAO-N biocatalysts have been applied in deracemization reactions for the efficient asymmetric synthesis of the generic active pharmaceutical ingredients Solifenacin and Levocetirizine as well as the natural products (R)-coniine, (R)-eleagnine, and (R)-leptaflorine. We also report a novel MAO-N mediated asymmetric oxidative Pictet-Spengler approach to the synthesis of (R)-harmicine.

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