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Pepzymes

ph2Several metalloenzymes have been found to catalyze the difficult chemical transformation reactions under very mild conditions. Recently, it has been revealed that numerous metalloenzymes containing bare metal ions, so-called non-heme metalloenzyme, can catalyze various reactions. Inspired by these versatility, many researchers have made effort to develop the biomimetic catalyst and protein mimics including the complexes with highly reactive metal ions belonging to platinum group metals . On the other hand, enormous efforts have been made to generate artificial metalloenzymes, which are highly regio- and/or enantioselective catalysts consisted with a protein matrix and a synthetic metal complex. As alternative, metal swapping technology for constructing artificial metalloenzymes has been employed based on the direct complexation of bare metal ions with amino acid residues derived from protein as the ligands.
We have recently developed artificial metalloenzymes using a cupin type protein as a functional ligand. In this work, the cupin protein from hyperthermophile was selected for scaffold of artificial metalloenzyme (metal ligand). This protein has high thermal stability and involves a metal binding site consisting with 4-histidine motif, which is promising for the metal binding site of various transition metal ions. We have already succeeded in constructing the metal complexes with this protein. In the crystal structures, the metal center exhibits an octahedral geometry coordinated by four histidine imidazoles and two oxygen atoms except copper, which showed tetragonal pyramidal geometry.

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