New Trends in Enzyme Catalysis and Biomimetic Chemical Reactions

New Trends in Enzyme Catalysis and  Biomimetic Chemical Reactions About two centuries ago the German poet, writer and philosopher J.W. Goethe notedthat Nature is not only a great artist but also a skillful master. The contemporarygeneration of scientists who work in the fields of molecular biology, biochemistry andbiophysics can appreciate to the fullest extent not only the internal beauty of naturalmolecular structures but also with what consummate skill these structures have beencreated. One of the wonderful creations of Nature, biological catalysis, appears as achallenging problem to chemists of the 21th century. The unique catalytic properties ofenzyme, which are their precise specificity, selectivity, high rate of chemical reaction,and regulatory capacity occupy a great deal of attention. Classical and modern physicalchemistry, chemical kinetics, organic, inorganic and quantum-chemistry provide anarsenal of physical methods and establish a basis for the investigation of structure andaction mechanism of enzymes. The general properties of enzymes, the “ideal” chemicalcatalysts, are the formation of intermediates, smooth thermodynamic relief along thereaction coordinate, fulfillment of all selection rules for chemical reactions, the ability toproceed and to stop temporarily and spatially, and compatibility with the ambient media.These properties are possible by multifunctional active centers, by the unique structure ofprotein globules, possessing both rigidity and flexibility, and the formation of catalyticensembles. Biochemistry returns to chemistry a plethora of knowledge about nearly“ideal” catalysts and opens the way for chemical modeling of enzyme reactions.

Authors: GERTZ I. LIKHTENSHTEINPages: 241     Year: 2006

Tags: chemistry enzymes biology

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