Modified nucleosides and oligonucleotides as ligands for asymmetric reactions
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Development of chiral ligands capable of achieving high selectivity for various asymmetric catalytic reactions has been an important aim of both academia and industry. Nature is capable to selectively catalyze chemical reactions by using enzymes. An ideal catalyst would combine the selectivity of nature and the reactivity of man-made catalysts based on transition metal complexes. The two biomolecules chosen to achieve this are DNA and PNA. DNA is a chiral molecule with high binding selectivity towards small molecules and has been used as ligand for asymmetric catalysis. PNA is an achiral structural analogue of DNA that can form duplexes with DNA. To produce DNA based catalysts it is necessary to introduce a ligand such as a phosphine that will strongly coordinate to transition metals. To achieve this, functionalized linkers need to be introduced into a DNA strand, to covalently couple the phosphine moiety at a specific location of the DNA strand. Amine linkers and several modified nucleosides have been prepared containing thiol and amine functionalities and some of them were successfully introduced into DNA strands to function as linkers for the introduction of phosphine functionalities. Those strands were purified and an adequate procedure was developed for their analysis by MALDI-TOF. Diphenylphosphino carboxylic acids have been coupled to amine modified deoxyuridines by amide bond formation. The same coupling method has been used for oligonucleotides. DNA strands containing phosphine moieties were characterized by MALDI-TOF and ³¹P NMR spectrometry. ³¹P NMR spectroscopy was also used to confirm coordination of a phosphine modified 15-mer to [PdCl(η³-allyl)]₂. The phosphine modified nucleobases were also tested as ligands for palladium catalyzed allylic alkylation and allylic amination with diphenylallyl acetate as substrate although no enantioselectivity was observed. A PNA monomer was also modified with a bidentate sulfur protected phosphine and successfully introduced into a short PNA strand using manual solid phase synthesis. This strand was analyzed by MALDI-TOF. Moreover, preliminary studies were performed to test the use of aptamers as scaffolds for targets containing a ligand functionality.
Thesis, PhD Doctor of Philosophy
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