Cyclic peptides containing a disulfide bridge were identified as a simple and versatile coordination sphere for asymmetric catalysis. Upon complexation with Cu(2+) ions they catalyze Diels-Alder and Friedel-Crafts reactions with high enantioselectivities of up to 99% ee and 86% ee, respectively. Moreover, the peptides ligands were systematically optimized with the assistance of "Alanine Scanning". This biomolecular design could greatly expand the choice of peptide scaffolds for artificial metallopeptide catalysts.
Keywords: Diels-Alder reaction; Friedel-Crafts reaction; asymmetric catalysis; peptides.
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