Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

One step closer to green catalysis

Date:
November 15, 2010
Source:
NWO (Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research)
Summary:
Mirror image catalysis in water with water is effective and produces no waste. Researchers have now succeeded in imitating this marvelous trick of nature. They made a hybrid catalyst of metal complexes and DNA. This catalyst allows the selective formation of a single mirror image molecule in a chemical reaction with water in water.

Mirror image catalysis in water with water is effective and produces no waste. Researchers have now succeeded in imitating this marvelous trick of nature. NWO researchers Gerard Roelfes and Ben Feringa made a hybrid catalyst of metal complexes and DNA. This catalyst allows the selective formation of a single mirror image molecule in a chemical reaction with water in water.

The journal Nature Chemistry published the results of the investigation.

Feringa and Roelfes created a biologically inspired catalyst. It consists partly of metal complexes, as is the case with many traditional catalysts, and partly of DNA. PhD student Arnold Boersma accidentally discovered the reaction with water that selectively creates single mirror image forms of a molecule. Although it's not yet completely clear how exactly this reaction takes place, it is clear that the DNA plays a crucial role. The reaction takes place near the DNA structure, because the metal complex responsible for the catalysis is attached to the DNA. The molecules created in this reaction would appear to sense the presence of the DNA. Catalysts are very important in chemistry: they help convert one material into another.

Selectively creating mirror image forms

Some molecules have two mirror image forms. But often only one of those mirror image forms is usable -- for example, as a building block for medicines. Scientists have been able to create mirror image forms selectively for some time now, but no one had ever managed to do this using water as the substance that causes the reaction, and using water as the solvent. Water's big advantage is that, in some reactions, it yields virtually no waste, unlike the substances currently in use.

Although water is a seemingly simple molecule, it has complex properties and for this reason is difficult to use in mirror image catalysis. It does, however, form the foundation for one of the cleanest forms of catalysis. Using water to create mirror image forms of molecules selectively is very attractive because nothing else needs then to be changed or added. In such a reaction, fewer byproducts are formed. The DNA-based catalyst allows the selective reactions to take place using water as the solvent and as the reagent. Moreover, the new hybrid catalyst is easy to recycle.

Gerard Roelfes and Ben Feringa carried out their research at the University of Groningen. Their research was funded by the Dutch Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) and the top national school for catalysis research (NRSC-C). 


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NWO (Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Arnold J. Boersma, David Coquiθre, Danny Geerdink, Fiora Rosati, Ben L. Feringa, Gerard Roelfes. Catalytic enantioselective syn hydration of enones in water using a DNA-based catalyst. Nature Chemistry, 2010; DOI: 10.1038/nchem.819

Cite This Page:

NWO (Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research). "One step closer to green catalysis." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115161720.htm>.
NWO (Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research). (2010, November 15). One step closer to green catalysis. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115161720.htm
NWO (Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research). "One step closer to green catalysis." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101115161720.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Gulfstream G500, G600 Unveiling

Gulfstream G500, G600 Unveiling

Flying (Oct. 20, 2014) — Watch Gulfstream's public launch of the G500 and G600 at their headquarters in Savannah, Ga., along with a surprise unveiling of the G500, which taxied up under its own power. Video provided by Flying
Powered by NewsLook.com
Japanese Scientists Unveil Floating 3D Projection

Japanese Scientists Unveil Floating 3D Projection

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 20, 2014) — Scientists in Tokyo have demonstrated what they say is the world's first 3D projection that floats in mid air. A laser that fires a pulse up to a thousand times a second superheats molecules in the air, creating a spark which can be guided to certain points in the air to shape what the human eye perceives as an image. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Hey, Doc! Sewage, Beer and Food Scraps Can Power Chevrolet’s Bi-Fuel Impala

Hey, Doc! Sewage, Beer and Food Scraps Can Power Chevrolet’s Bi-Fuel Impala

3BL Media (Oct. 20, 2014) — Hey, Doc! Sewage, Beer and Food Scraps Can Power Chevrolet’s Bi-fuel Impala Video provided by 3BL
Powered by NewsLook.com
What We Know About Microsoft's Rumored Smartwatch

What We Know About Microsoft's Rumored Smartwatch

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) — Microsoft will reportedly release a smartwatch that works across different mobile platforms, has a two-day battery life and tracks heart rate. Video provided by Newsy
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