Led by Mo Movassaghi and David Sherman
Nature is capable of generating a vast array of complex molecules for use as signaling and defense agents. One of the most remarkable transformations in biosynthesis is the use of P450 enzymes that have evolved with natural product biosynthetic systems for late stage modification and structure diversification. Nature’s ability to induce C–H functionalization, often C–H oxidation, within complex settings creates opportunities for new bond formations and disconnections at sites that are otherwise chemically inert.
The ability to induce site-specific reactivity on a given molecules at otherwise unreactive sites in complex settings has tremendous significance to the field of complex molecule synthesis. Inspired by natures approach in related processes, a large and important aspect of the center’s efforts are directed at developing modified ezymatic oxidation catalysts that may be used in conjunction with anchoring substrates to provide controlled oxidation and functionalization.