Archive for the ‘Hot articles’ Category

In silico screening as an effective tool in drug discovery

According to statistics published by the World Health Organization (WHO), tuberculosis (TB) is globally one of the leading causes of death from a curable infectious disease. While antibiotics represent a major breakthrough for modern medicine, the spread of multi-drug resistant (MDR) bacterial strains, such as Mycobacterium tuberculosis, have become a major threat to healthcare.

Encouragingly, renewed efforts in antibiotic research have resulted in the identification of new leads, some of which are currently in clinical trials. Even in light of these promising efforts, Dr. Ehmke Pohl of Durham University and collaborators from the Cambridge Crystallographic Data Centre and Institut Pasteur de Lille are emphasizing the need to optimize existing TB treatments as well as develop an efficient means of identifying novel therapeutics.

Structure-based drug discovery is an integral part of most industrial drug discovery programs and as a result, there is an ever-growing number of protein X-ray crystal structures available in databases such as the Protein Data Bank (PDB). Pohl and collaborators outline a robust and versatile strategy for an in silico screening protocol based on compounds in the ZINC database (a free resource of commercially available chemical compounds) and crystal structures in the PDB.

Their current OBC study focuses on the transcriptional regulator EthR which is involved in M. tuberculosis resistance. EthR has been shown to limit the efficacy of ethionamide-based drugs by downregulating the EthA enzyme involved in activation of ethionamide prodrugs. EthR has therefore been validated as a suitable target as its inhibition boosts ethionamide action.

Using tailored chemical and physicochemical descriptors (for example: compound volume) and a detailed knowledge of the EthR binding pocket, approximately 6 million compounds were evaluated for compatibility using KNIME pipeline software. 409 201 diverse compounds were identified for docking studies and surprisingly, only 6 compounds failed to produce feasible binding interactions. After a careful post-docking filter, 284 chemically diverse compounds were obtained and a visual analysis of all binding poses and ligand geometries in combination with computational analysis narrowed the screen down to 85 substrates. These in silico hits were then evaluated for their capability to bind to EthR using thermal protein stability studies which resulted in 20 new potential candidates for lead optimization with reasonable EC50 values.

Given the ever-growing number of high resolution crystal structures in the PDB, in silico screening approaches can be tailored to any well-characterized protein structure and utilized as an efficient tool for identifying new active molecules.

To find out more see:

New active leads for tuberculosis booster drugs by structure-based drug discovery
Natalie J. Tatum, 
DOI:10.1039/C7OB00910K


Victoria Corless is currently completing her Ph.D. in organic chemistry with Prof. Andrei Yudin at the University of Toronto. Her research is centred on the synthesis of kinetically amphoteric building blocks which offer a versatile platform for the development of chemoselective transformations with particular emphasis on creating novel biologically active molecules.

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An unusual hydride source for reductive aminations

The reductive amination reaction between amines and carbonyls is a highly useful and versatile means of forming C-N bonds. Given the accessibility of starting materials and its modular nature, reductive aminations have found extensive application not only in organic synthesis but medicinal chemistry and the production of agro- and industrial chemicals.

Developing efficient and economical processes to access valuable materials is a priority in industry. One of the most fundamental ways of doing this is to adhere to the principle of atom economy which moves to minimize waste generated by a chemical reaction at the molecular level. While traditionally, chemists have focused on improving yield or minimizing the number of steps in a reaction sequence, atom economy aims to design reactions in which all atoms involved in a chemical process are present in the desired products.

An international team of researchers have recently published a novel iridium-catalyzed reductive amination using carbon monoxide (CO) as an alternative reductant. This process does not require an external hydrogen source as the hydride is abstracted by the catalyst/carbon monoxide complex from the hemiaminal intermediate, forming an iridium-hydride species. Essentially, the hydride is derived internally (from the amine) as a result of the deoxygenative potential of carbon monoxide. The reaction is also tolerant to a number of functional groups that are incompatible with other commonly employed reducing reagents.

This is a very interesting twist on the reductive amination reaction for which external sources of hydrogen are often required. While it could be called atomic economic from this standpoint, the fact that carbon dioxide is a major by product of the reaction detracts from this claim and could be problematic on an industrial level. Regardless, this work is a significant first step and demonstrates the importance of optimizing the efficiency of well-established protocols in organic synthesis for large scale purposes.

To find out more see:

Reductive amination catalyzed by iridium complexes using carbon monoxide as a reducing agent

DOI:10.1039/C7OB01005B


Victoria Corless is currently completing her Ph.D. in organic chemistry with Prof. Andrei Yudin at the University of Toronto. Her research is centred on the synthesis of kinetically amphoteric building blocks which offer a versatile platform for the development of chemoselective transformations with particular emphasis on creating novel biologically active molecules.

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The effect of polymer architecture on the self-assembly and stability of complex coacervation

Complex coacervation refers to a liquid-liquid phase separation that arises from the association of oppositely charged polyelectrolytes in water. It is a widely used laboratory technique and coacervate-based materials have extensive application in the food and cosmetic industries as well as drug delivery and the development of biomedical adhesives.

Under favourable conditions, the coalescence of coacervate droplets leads to a separation of a system into two liquid layers: a polymer-rich coacervate phase in equilibrium with a polymer poor supernatant. Coacervation is entropically driven and occurs through an initial electrostatic attraction between oppositely charged molecules followed by the release of counterions and rearrangement of water molecules. However, our understanding of factors that control self-assembly and stability at the molecular level remains limited.

In the past, many studies have focused on how the chemical nature of a polymer affects coacervation without considering the effect of polymer architecture. In a collaborative study recently published in OBC, Prof. Sarah Perry and Prof. Todd Emerick et al., of the University of Massachusetts Amherst investigate the effect of branching in polypeptide-based comb polymers on the self-assembly and stability of complex coacervates.

In comparison to branched copolymers, the interaction of oppositely charged linear copolymers to form charge-neutral coacervate complexes is understandably straightforward. However, the extent to which a mismatched polymer architecture would alter coalescence is relatively unclear and a question that Perry and Emerick sought to answer.

The self-assembly and stability of complex coacervates resulting from oppositely charged linear polymers, linear and comb polymer and two comb polymers (see Figure) were determined/compared through turbidity measurements, optical microscopy and Monte Carlo simulations. Ultimately, it was observed that the comb structure did not form coacervates as the branched structure prevents cooperative interactions between oppositely charged polymer pairs and releases fewer counterions, leading to a weaker driving force for coacervation.

This study provides insight to the role that polymer architecture plays on complex coacervation and highlights the need to develop a detailed and predictable understanding of molecular level effects of polymer chemistry and architecture in coacervate formation.

To find out more see:

The effect of comb architecture on complex coacervation
Brandon M. Johnston,  10.1039/C7OB01314K


Victoria Corless is currently completing her Ph.D. in organic chemistry with Prof. Andrei Yudin at the University of Toronto. Her research is centred on the synthesis of kinetically amphoteric building blocks which offer a versatile platform for the development of chemoselective transformations with particular emphasis on creating novel biologically active molecules.

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Unexpected divergent reactivity in Pt-catalyzed cyclizations of 1,5-bisallenes

As a result of their unique physical and chemical properties, allenes have become key building blocks in modern organic synthesis. The discovery and development of their varied reactivity have been extensively reported on in recent years, however, application to more challenging bisallene systems has been comparatively limited.

In her group’s recent OBC publication, Prof. María Paz Muñoz of the University of East Anglia sought to fill this gap in the bisallene literature. The study discusses the development of an unprecedented Pt-catalyzed cyclization of 1,5-bisallenes in the presence of oxygen nucleophiles to selectively access 6- and 7-membered rings.

After initial screening, it was observed that selectivity was highly sensitive to the reaction conditions and could, therefore, be tuned to yield the desired molecular scaffold. Interestingly, in the presence of nucleophilic alcohols, vinyltetrahydropyridines are formed preferentially while the formation of di- and tetrahydroazepines are favoured when water is used.

Exhaustive mechanistic studies provided insight into this divergent reactivity. It was determined that different mechanisms operate depending on the nucleophile and electronic nature of the bisallene (as a result of its nitrogen tether). It is proposed that, in the presence of nucleophilic alcohols, 6-membered vinyltetrahydropyridines are preferentially formed as a result of a platinum hydride active catalyst—which are known to form from platinum complexes and alcohols. Tetrahydroazepines, on the other hand, are favoured when water is used as the nucleophile, proceeding first through a nucleophilic attack followed by carbocylization to form the 7-membered ring.

Understanding this complex mechanistic behaviour provides important insight into bisallene reactivity and will no doubt enhance the scope of this work’s application in organic and medicinal chemistry.

This communication is part of the OBC themed collection, Mechanistic Aspects of Organic Synthesis. You can read the rest of the collection here.

 

To find out more see:

Nucleophile dependent formation of 6- and 7-membered N-heterocycles by platinum-catalysed cyclisation of 1,5-bisallenes
María Teresa Quirós,César Hurtado-Rodrigo and María Paz Muñoz
DOI:10.1039/C7OB01469D


Victoria Corless is currently completing her Ph.D. in organic chemistry with Prof. Andrei Yudin at the University of Toronto. Her research is centred on the synthesis of kinetically amphoteric building blocks which offer a versatile platform for the development of chemoselective transformations with particular emphasis on creating novel biologically active molecules.

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Inspired by nature: dynamic stimuli responsive catalysis based on molecular motors

Catalysis is a fundamental concept in chemistry, allowing chemists to effectively carry out difficult transformations to access valuable materials with precision and control. For the most part, research has focused on the development of new catalysts for optimized performance to achieve high conversion and selectivity. However, special attention is now being paid to engineering catalysts whose activity can be tuned through external stimuli. This concept is ubiquitous in nature and its implementation into artificial systems offers unique opportunities and promising future applications.

A recent OBC publication by Prof. Ben Feringa of the University of Groningen Nijenborgh discusses his group’s success in developing two novel bisthiourea catalysts which display dynamic control over activity and stereoselectivity in the Henry reaction using light and heat as external stimuli.

This catalyst design is based on a molecular motor previously reported by Feringa and inspired by nature where control over function, activity and selectivity can be attained through conformational changes within the catalyst’s active site induced by external stimuli.

In the current publication, upon irradiation of the catalyst in its stable trans state, (R,R)-(P,P)-trans (see Scheme), an unstable cis state is obtained, (R,R)-(M,M)-cis, in which the catalytic groups A and B are brought into proximity to carry out the desired enantioselective transformation. The catalyst can then be converted through heating to a stable cis state, the (R,R)-(M,M)-cis isomer, via a thermal helix inversion. In this conformation, the two active groups A and B remain within reaction proximity, however, as the helicity of the motor core is inverted, a pseudoenantiomeric catalytic environment is produced which results in the formation of the opposite enantiomer.

This is the first example of a tunable bisthiourea catalyst and represents an important advancement in the field of dynamic stimuli responsive catalysis. This new area of research offers great potential for advanced materials and solving long-standing challenges that have thus far been impossible to overcome using conventional methodologies.

To find out more see:
Dynamic control over catalytic function using responsive bisthiourea catalysts
M. Vlatković,  
DOI:10.1039/C7OB01851G


Victoria Corless is currently completing her Ph.D. in organic chemistry with Prof. Andrei Yudin at The University of Toronto. Her research is centred on the synthesis of kinetically amphoteric molecules which offer a versatile platform for the development of chemoselective transformations with particular emphasis on creating novel biologically active molecules.

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Synthesis of challenging oligosaccharides by harnessing glycosyltransferase activity directly from human breast milk

Synthetic oligosaccharides and glycoconjugates are being increasingly used to solve important problems within biological research for vaccine development and drug discovery purposes. However, due to their complicated isolation and characterization from biological fluids, as well as a lack of general and efficient protocols for their preparation, progress within the field has been limited.

A recent OBC publication from Prof. Carmen Galan of the University of Bristol seeks to overcome this longstanding challenge using imidazolium-labeled (ITag) glycosides. Ionic liquid-based labels are emerging as a new class of covalent chemical labels that provide a unique handle for facile identification and purification of substrates from complex reaction mixtures using mass spectroscopy.

It was hypothesised that the ITag-glycan probes could be used to harness the natural biosynthetic machinery present in human breastmilk (i.e. glycosyltransferases) to access biologically important oligosaccharides. This study circumvents lengthy and costly chemical syntheses as well as the need to isolate a specific enzyme which can be challenging to express and applicable only to small-scale production.

In a matter of days, the group was able to access a series of highly desirable oligosaccharides, including LacNAc-ITag, ITag-Lewisx and ITAg-Lewisa through incubation of a labelled glycoside in readily sourced human breast milk. The capability of ITag to aid in the synthesis of oligosaccharides from a complex, multi-enzyme environment is pivotal. This technology could revolutionize the way in which synthetic, enzymatic transformations are carried out and has the potential to expand outside of carbohydrate chemistry.

To find out more see:

Imidazolium-labeled glycosides as probes to harness glycosyltransferase activity in human breast milk
I. Sittel and M. C. Galan
DOI: 10.1039/C7OB00550D


Victoria Corless is currently completing her Ph.D. in organic chemistry with Prof. Andrei Yudin at The University of Toronto. Her research is centred on the synthesis of kinetically amphoteric molecules which offer a versatile platform for the development of chemoselective transformations with particular emphasis on creating novel biologically active molecules.

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Insights into temperature controlled enantioselectivity in asymmetric catalysis

The rare phenomenon of enantioselectivity reversal, using a simple change in reaction temperature control, is presented in the latest HOT article published in OBC.

The ability to mimic nature’s stereochemical control in the production of complex molecules has been a longstanding challenge in chemistry. There are numerous strategies chemists have implemented to generate stereochemically complex structures, however, with the advent of asymmetric catalysis, highly stereoselective reactions can be achieved using chiral reagents and catalysts.

In a recent OBC publication by Prof. Kenso Soai of Tokyo University and researchers from Merck, one of the very few examples in which the enantioselective outcome of a reaction is controlled through temperature was presented. Gaining enantioselective control by changing simple reaction parameters has been an attractive and long sought after advancement within the field of asymmetric catalysis. While there are examples of enantioselective control using solvent, metals and additives, very few examples exist that use temperature alone.

The study outlines the effect of temperature on the asymmetric autocatalysis of pyrimidal alkanol in the addition reaction of diisopropyl zinc to the pyrimidine-5-carbaldehyde. After reaction initiation using a chiral initiator, the product alkanol behaves as an asymmetric catalyst for its own formation and infers its chirality to the product in an autocatalytic cycle. When the reaction was performed at 0 ºC in the presence of (S)-1-phenyl-ethyl alcohol, as expected, (S)-pyrimidal alkanol was afforded in high enantiomeric excess. Interestingly, when the reaction was cooled to -44 ºC, the opposite enantioselectivity was observed though with a slightly lower enantiomeric excess of the desired alkanol.

The exact mechanism through which this reversal happens is still unclear however, it’s speculated that the relationship between temperature and the relative enthalpic vs. entropic contributions to free energy may play a part or the temperature dependent aggregation of zinc alkoxide may also be involved.

It’s important to remember that the temperature effect on reactions involving organozinc reagents is not always straight forward and may not always lead to the best outcome.

Regardless, this study provides interesting insight into temperature controlled enantioselectivity that may lead to a more detailed understanding of such processes and how they can be synthetically exploited.

To find out more see:

Unusual reversal of enantioselectivity in the asymmetric autocatalysis of pyrimidyl alkanol triggered by chiral aromatic alkanols and amines
Arimasa Matusmoto, Satoshi Fujiwara, Yui Hiyoshi,aKerstin Zawatzky, Alexey A. Makarov, Christopher J. Welch and Kenso Soai
DOI: 10.1039/C6OB02415G


Victoria Corless is currently completing her Ph.D. in organic chemistry with Prof. Andrei Yudin at The University of Toronto. Her research is centred on the synthesis of kinetically amphoteric molecules, which offer a versatile platform for the development of chemoselective transformations with particular emphasis on creating novel biologically active molecules.

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Enhancing nonlinear optical imaging through porphyrin-based dyes

Over the past several decades, advances in cell imaging have dramatically transformed biology and medicine. Fluorescence spectroscopy and microscopy are currently the most popular imaging techniques however, there are intrinsic limitations; many substrates are non-fluorescent or weakly fluorescent, fluorescent labels are often perturbative for small molecules and peptides and, perhaps most importantly, labelling or staining with fluorophores are not recommended for in vivo medicinal applications in humans. Hence, the search for highly sensitive optical imaging methods is increasingly desirable in biomedical and material sciences.

Nonlinear optical imaging is an emerging technology that encompasses a range of optical phenomena. In a recent study by Prof. Koen Clays of the University of Leuven and Prof. Harry Anderson of Oxford University, a new group of chromophores based on pyropheophorbide-a methyl ester (PPa-OMe) was developed for the linear and nonlinear optical imaging of membrane potentials as well as biological imaging of structures through two-photon excited fluorescence (TPEF) and second harmonic generation (SGH) microscopy.

In TPEF, a fluorophore is excited by the simultaneous absorption of two photons in the infrared spectral range. In conventional one-photon fluorescence, the same transition to higher energy levels requires photons in the ultraviolet or visible range. The longer incident wavelength in TPEF leads to improved depth penetration in tissues, with reduced potential for photolytic damage. SHG, on the other hand, is a nonlinear process where two photons interact with a nonlinear material and are effectively combined to generate new photons with twice the energy. This process does not involve absorption of photons but relies on virtual energy states and can only occur in materials that exhibit a non-centrosymmetric structure.

Unlike incoherent processes such as fluorescence, coherent nonlinear optical spectroscopies generate different optical signals depending on the underlying processes. They have broad utility as biomedical tools, offering contrasting mechanisms to fluorescence emissions and provide a useful alternative to label-based imaging.

In this OBC publication, the electronic structure of PPa-OMe (1a) was altered to tune it’s linear and nonlinear optical properties. Porphyrins and related porphyrinoid chromophores inherently possess excellent linear and nonlinear optical properties due to their large, conjugated π-system. By incorporating both electron-donating and –accepting groups, a push-pull type system was generated in which greater SHG intensity was observed due to the increased polarization of its π-system. A hydrophilic group, bis-triethyleneglycol (TEG) amide, was attached to make PPa-OMe amphiphilic and was then suspended in lipid-based water in oil monolayer droplets—a simple model system used to probe potentials across cellular membranes. TPEF and SHG images of the bis-TEG amide attached dyes revealed that the TPEF and SHG involve transition dipole moments in different orientations. While TPEF is detectable in all directions around the sample, SHG is detected in the forward direction of the incident light meaning there is an overall cancelling of the SHG signal from anti-parallel dyes. In order to improve these systems, control over orientation within cell membranes is crucial however, chromophores based on these PPa-OMe derivatives are promising prototypes for future cell imaging studies.

To find out more see:

Push-pull pyropheophorbides for nonlinear optical imaging
Anjul Khadria, Yovan de Coene, Przemyslaw Gawel, Cécile Roche, Koen Clays and Harry L. Anderson
DOI: 10.1039/C6OB02319C


Victoria Corless is currently completing her Ph.D. in organic chemistry with Prof. Andrei Yudin at The University of Toronto. Her research is centred on the synthesis of kinetically amphoteric molecules, which offer a versatile platform for the development of chemoselective transformations with particular emphasis on creating novel biologically active molecules.

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Editor’s Choice – Meet our Associate Editors

Professor Jin-Quan Yu’s (Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, California, USA) research centres around the discovery of novel reactions based on C-H activation.

Jin’s recommended articles:

C–H activation enables a rapid structure–activity relationship study of arylcyclopropyl amines for potent and selective LSD1 inhibitors
Shin Miyamura, Misaho Araki, Yosuke Ota, Yukihiro Itoh, Shusuke Yasuda, Mitsuharu Masuda, Tomoyuki Taniguchi, Yoshihiro Sowa, Toshiyuki Sakai, Takayoshi Suzuki, Kenichiro Itami, Junichiro Yamaguchi

Asymmetric synthesis of (−)-renieramycin T
Junhao Jia, Ruijiao Chen, Hao Liu, Xiong Li, Yuanliang Jia, Xiaochuan Chen


Professor Margaret Brimble (University of Auckland, New Zealand) is the Director of Medicinal Chemistry and a distinguished Professor at the University of Auckland. Her research program focuses on the synthesis of bioactive natural products, antimicrobial peptides and peptidomimetics.

Margaret’s recommended articles:

Concise diastereoselective synthesis of calcaripeptide C via asymmetric transfer hydrogenation/Pd-induced chiral allenylzinc as a key reaction
Gullapalli Kumaraswamy, Vykunthapu Narayanarao, Ragam Raju

Concise synthesis of calystegines B and B< intramolecular Nozaki–Hiyama–Kishi reaction
Hong-Yao Wang, Atsushi Kato, Kyoko Kinami, Yi-Xian Li, George W. J. Fleet, Chu-Yi Yu


Professor Christian Hackenberger’s (Leibniz-Institut für Molekulare Pharmakologie and Humboldt Universität zu Berlin, Germany) research focuses on the development of new bioorthogonal reactions to study protein function and in particular posttranslational modifications, addressing issues such as the study of the Alzheimer-relevant tau protein, antibody-drug conjugates and new methods for the delivery of functional proteins into cells.

Christian’s recommended articles:

Site-selective incorporation and ligation of protein aldehydes
Richard J. Spears, Martin A. Fascione

Protein ubiquitination via dehydroalanine: development and insights into the diastereoselective 1,4-addition step
Roman Meledin, Sachitanand M. Mali, Sumeet K. Singh, Ashraf Brik


Professor Lei Liu’s (Tsinghua University, China) research group is interested in all aspects of chemical protein synthesis.

Lei’s recommended articles:

Hybrid phase ligation for efficient synthesis of histone proteins
Ruixuan R. Yu, Santosh K. Mahto, Kurt Justus, Mallory M. Alexander, Cecil J. Howard, Jennifer J. Ottesen

Enediyne-based protein capture agents: demonstration of an enediyne moiety acting as a photoaffinity label
Joyee Das, Sayantani Roy, Swapnil Halnor, Amit Kumar Das and Amit Basak


We invite you to submit your urgent research to their editorial offices. With a reputation for quality and fast times to publication, OBC is the home of highly significant original research and reviews in all areas of organic chemistry, including organic synthesis, physical organic chemistry, supramolecular chemistry and bioorganic chemistry.

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Improving liposomal boron carriers for effective boron neutron capture therapy

For years, radiotherapy has been an essential mode of noninvasive cancer therapy and advancements have led to life saving treatments for patients. In contrast to other conventional radiotherapies, boron neutron capture therapy (BNCT) is unique in its selective destruction of cancerous cells. BNCT is based on nuclear capture and fission reactions when nonradioactive 10B is irradiated with neutrons to yield excited 11B* which decays into high energy alpha particles and 7Li nuclei. Boron is preferentially accumulated into tumour cells though non-toxic carriers and the short length of the generated neutron beams (5-9 µm) destroys nearby cells leaving the surrounding healthy tissue intact.

The development of carrier systems that deliver sufficient amounts of boron to carry out effective destruction of all vicinal tumour cells has been a significant area of BNCT research for many years. A recent breakthrough made by Professors Atsushi Ikeda of Hiroshima University, Takeshi Nagasaki of Osaka City University and Kazuya Koumoto of Konan University has led to the development of a novel method for incorporating boron-containing moieties within hydrophobic lipid membranes.

Liposomes have been studied extensively as boron carriers and are promising candidates for BNCT as lipids display low toxicity. In the past, boron-containing liposomes have been prepared by dissolution of boron compounds in an internal water phase (Figure, A) or by using amphiphilic boron compounds embedded in the liposomal bilayer such that boron coats the outer surface of the lipid membrane (Figure, B). Unfortunately, even when these two methods are used in conjunction, the concentration of boron within the liposome is insufficient for effective BNCT and increasing liposomal dosing is problematic as high concentrations of lipids interfere with uptake mechanisms in the liver.

A novel method for boron transport is therefore of high value and in their recent OBC publication, the first example of boron incoporation into liposomal lipid membranes was successfully demonstrated. Key was the preparation of aryl pinacolato boronate esters bearing methyl groups at both ortho positions (Figure, R1 positions) of the phenyl rings which helped in stabilizing the boronate esters against hydrolysis.

While the concentration of boron within the lipid membrane was not particularly high, this study has unlocked yet another avenue through which non-toxic liposomal boron carrier concentrations can be improved and when used with previous boron loading methods, produces liposomes with sufficient boron concentrations to carry out BCNT. This result will no doubt enhance BNCT and lead to critical, life saving therapies for cancer patients.

To find out more see:

Lipid-membrane-incorporated arylboronate esters as agents for boron neutron capture therapy
Masafumi Ueda, Kengo Ashizawa, Kouta Sugikawa, Kazuya Koumoto, Takeshi Nagasaki and Atsushi Ikeda
DOI:10.1039/C6OB02142E


Victoria Corless is currently completing her Ph.D. in organic chemistry with Prof. Andrei Yudin at The University of Toronto. Her research is centred on the synthesis of kinetically amphoteric molecules, which offer a versatile platform for the development of chemoselective transformations with particular emphasis on creating novel biologically active molecules.

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