Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Peptides-on-demand: Radical New Green Chemistry Makes The Impossible Possible

Date:
March 7, 2009
Source:
McGill University
Summary:
Chemists have discovered an entirely new way of synthesizing peptides using simple reagents, a process that would be impossible in classical chemistry.

McGill University chemistry professor Chao-Jun (C.J.) Li is known as one of the world leading pioneers in green chemistry, an entirely new approach to the science which eschews the use of toxic, petrochemical-based solvents in favour of basic substances like water and new ways of making molecules.

Related Articles


The environmental benefits of the green approach are obvious and significant, but following the road less travelled is also paying off in purely scientific terms. With these alternative methods, Li and his colleagues have discovered an entirely new way of synthesizing peptides using simple reagents, a process that would be impossible in classical chemistry. Their results will be published Feb. 27 in the online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

Peptides are short oligomer and polymer substances made up of two or more amino acids linked in a chain. Proteins – also known as polypeptides – are themselves composed of longer chains of peptides. Peptides are enormously important to biological and proteomic research, but classical chemistry provides no easy way to synthesize them, making the potential impact of this discovery very significant.

"Currently, to generate peptides you must use a peptide synthesizer, an expensive piece of high-tech equipment," explained Li, Canada Research Chair in Green Chemistry. "You need to purchase every single separate amino acid unit that makes up the peptide, and feed them into the machine one by one, which then assembles them. Every time you need a new peptide, you need to synthesize it individually from scratch."

Li's new process, by contrast, allows researchers to construct a single, simple "skeleton" peptide which can be modified into any other peptide needed with the addition of a simple reagent.

"If you want to make one peptide or 20 or even 100, you just use a different reagent each time," Li said. "If you use 20 different reagents, you get 20 different peptides."

"This could never have been discovered using the classical form of chemistry," he continued. "Every amino acid unit is very similar to every other one, and classical chemistry simply cannot differentiate one from the other."

The new method is considerably less expensive than traditional techniques, and can readily be adopted by labs anywhere in the world, Li said.

"This is really an enabling new technology," he added, "and since McGill has decided not to patent it, we're making our method available to everyone. We are paying the journal's open access fee, so anyone in the world can access the paper."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by McGill University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

McGill University. "Peptides-on-demand: Radical New Green Chemistry Makes The Impossible Possible." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 March 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090224154906.htm>.
McGill University. (2009, March 7). Peptides-on-demand: Radical New Green Chemistry Makes The Impossible Possible. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090224154906.htm
McGill University. "Peptides-on-demand: Radical New Green Chemistry Makes The Impossible Possible." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090224154906.htm (accessed October 31, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Friday, October 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Jaguar Land Rover Opens $800 Million Factory in Britain

Jaguar Land Rover Opens $800 Million Factory in Britain

AFP (Oct. 30, 2014) British luxury car manufacturer Jaguar Land Rover opened a $800 million engine manufacturing centre in western England, creating 1,400 jobs. Duration: 00:45 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
SkyCruiser Concept Claims to Solve Problem With Flying Cars

SkyCruiser Concept Claims to Solve Problem With Flying Cars

Buzz60 (Oct. 30, 2014) A start-up company called Krossblade says its SkyCruiser concept flying car solves the problem with most flying car concepts. Mara Montalbano (@maramontalbano) explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Arm Restores Amputee Dexterity

Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Arm Restores Amputee Dexterity

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 29, 2014) A Swedish amputee who became the first person to ever receive a brain controlled prosthetic arm is able to manipulate and handle delicate objects with an unprecedented level of dexterity. The device is connected directly to his bone, nerves and muscles, giving him the ability to control it with his thoughts. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Robots Get Funky on the Dance Floor

Robots Get Funky on the Dance Floor

AP (Oct. 29, 2014) Dancing, spinning and fighting robots are showing off their agility at "Robocomp" in Krakow. (Oct. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins