A Genetically Encodable Ligand for Transfer Hydrogenation

Clemens Mayer, Donald Hilvert*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Simple tripeptides are shown here to be versatile ligands for iridium-catalyzed transfer hydrogenations affording large acceleration effects. A water-soluble iridium complex with Gly-Gly-Phe, for example, catalyzes the reduction of diverse ketones, aldehydes, and imines by formate with turnover frequencies rivaling or outperforming those of established ligand systems. Regioselective reduction of coenzyme NAD+ to NADH illustrates the potential utility of this system for biotechnological applications. Because peptides are genetically encodable, they represent an attractive class of foldamer ligands for creating artificial metalloenzymes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3427-3431
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Journal of Organic Chemistry
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - Jun-2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Homogeneous catalysis
  • Ligand design
  • Metalloenzymes
  • Peptides
  • Water chemistry

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