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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14(1), 2011-2021; doi:10.3390/ijms14012011

Catalysis of Transesterification Reactions by a Self-Assembled Nanosystem

Department of Chemical Sciences, University of Padova, Via Marzolo 1, 35131 Padova, Italy
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 November 2012 / Accepted: 14 January 2013 / Published: 21 January 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Molecular Self-Assembly 2012)
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Histidine-containing peptides self-assemble on the surface of monolayer protected gold nanoparticles to form a catalytic system for transesterification reactions. Self-assembly is a prerequisite for catalysis, since the isolated peptides do not display catalytic activity by themselves. A series of catalytic peptides and substrates are studied in order to understand the structural parameters that are of relevance to the catalytic efficiency of the system. It is shown that the distance between the His-residue and the anionic tail does not affect the catalytic activity. On the other hand, the catalytic His-residue is sensitive to the chemical nature of the flanking amino acid residues. In particular, the presence of polar Ser-residues causes a significant increase in activity. Finally, kinetic studies of a series of substrates reveal that substrates with a hydrophobic component are very suitable for this catalytic system.
Keywords: supramolecular catalysis; peptides; nanoparticles; self-assembly supramolecular catalysis; peptides; nanoparticles; self-assembly

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Zaramella, D.; Scrimin, P.; Prins, L.J. Catalysis of Transesterification Reactions by a Self-Assembled Nanosystem. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14, 2011-2021.

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