Valentyn Pozhydaiev and Martin Power’s feature article on the role of the solvent HFIP in Brønsted and Lewis acid catalyzed reactions has been published in Chemical Communications. Most of this writing was a product of their M1 and M2 stages, respectively and was carried out while the lab was shut down due to COVID-19. Congrats!
Kamila and Sreejith’s 37-page review on the feasibility and importance of non enzymatic metabolic reactions for the origin of life has appeared in Chemical Reviews. We hope it will inspire others to pursue this direction. Congrats!
Shaofei’s article on the surprising mechanism of boronic acid catalyzed reactions of alcohols and oximes has been published in Chemistry – A European Journal. Congrats!
A collaboration with Marco Cecchini’s group, this is a mixed computational and experimental attempt to rationalize why specific nitro compounds change the kinetic orders of some Brønsted acid catalyzed reactions. The model successfully predicts that sulphate esters should behave similarly. It has been published in Chemistry – A European Journal as part of the EuChemS special issue. Congrats to Marian and Ed for what ended up being the last of their many papers in the group! Also thanks to the Cecchini group for their endurance.
Our fourth experimental paper on the chemical origins of life is published in Nature Ecology & Evolution. It is the result of an international collaboration with researchers in Germany and Japan. We show that three common iron-based minerals promote the hydrogenation of carbon dioxide to give, almost exclusively, the intermediates and end-products of the Acetyl CoA pathway. This enzyme-free chemistry maps closely onto the biological pathway, suggesting it had geochemical origins. Congrats to Kamila and Sreejith from our group and thanks to our great collaborators! Free read-only version here. Paywall version here. Also check out the accompanying Behind the Paper post here.
Florent, Vuk, Jing, Ed and Pavle’s article on the synthesis of CF3-bearing allenes, chromenes and olefins starting from propargylic alcohols has been accepted for publication in The Journal of Organic Chemistry. Congrats!
Our third paper on the chemical origins of life is published in Nature. We show that ferrous iron promotes a one-pot reaction network that resembles the Krebs cycle and amino acid synthesis, starting from just pyruvate and glyoxylate. These enzyme-free reactions could have been a precursor to biological metabolism. Congrats to Kamila and Sreejith! Free read-only version here. Paywall version here. Also, check out the accompanying News & Views article by Robert Pascal here.
Kamila and Elodie’s invited account of our recent work on non-enzymatic metabolic pathways has been published in Bioorganic & Medicinal Letters. The special issue is in honor of the 2019 Tetrahedron Young Investigator Award to Dr. Raphaël Rodriguez.
Elodie’s collaboration with Dr. Samir Mameri (IUT Robert Schuman) and Profs. Ruhlmann (Strasbourg) and Schmitt (Dublin) on the properties of Mn clusters has been published in Dalton Transactions. Congrats, Elodie!