Terpene Biosynthesis as Inspiration for Supramolecular Catalysis


NaMeS students are invited to IPC PAS Seminar within Dream Chemistry Lecture Series delivered by:

Prof. Konrad Tiefenbacher

Dept. of Chemistry, University of Basel, Switzerland,

Dept. of Biosystems Science and Engineering, ETH Zurich, Switzerland

Thursday, 25th April, 2019, 10.00


Assembly hall of the IPC PAS


Nature’s extraordinary elegance when performing chemical reactions has fascinated and inspired chemists for decades. Arguably, one of the most complex organic transformations performed in living organisms, is the tail-to-head terpene (THT) cyclization. It allows the construction of the most diverse class of natural products, namely terpenes, via nature’s way of combinatorial chemical synthesis. Thousands of different natural products are formed from just a handful of simple, acyclic starting materials: geranyl pyrophosphate (monoterpenes), farnesyl-PP (sesquiterpenes) and geranylgeranyl-PP (diterpenes). Nature utilizes enzymes, termed cyclases or terpene synthases, to carry out this complex transformation. Building upon our initial results, we explore possibilities to utilize supramolecular structures to mimic such complex transformations in the laboratory.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No. 711859.