Design of Enzymes: The IPD is developing general methods for creating catalysts for chemical reactions not catalyzed by naturally occurring enzymes.
While naturally occurring enzymes catalyze a wide range of chemical reactions, many important synthetic reactions lack a naturally occurring enzymatic counterpart. Therefore, the design of enzymes with new catalytic activities could have broad applications in biotechnology, including degradation of toxic chemicals into inert byproducts and the synthesis of biofeuls. Using protein design methods, IPD scientists have successfully designed several novel enzymes catalyzing novel chemical reactions.
- Kemp elimination catalysts by computational enzyme design. (2008) Röthlisberger, D., Khersonsky O., Wollacott A. M., et al. Nature 453(7192), 190-5;
- Computational design of an enzyme catalyst for a stereoselective bimolecular Diels-Alder reaction. (2010) Siegel, J. B., Zanghellini A., et al Science 329(5989), 309-13.
- De novo computational design of retro-aldol enzymes. (2008) Jiang, L., Althoff E. A., et al. Science 319(5868), 1387-91)