Development of novel halogenase enzymes for biopharmaceutical applications

Lead Research Organisation: University of Warwick
Department Name: School of Life Sciences


Identification of new halogenated synthetic, natural and non-natural compounds; and further exploitation and synthesis of these compounds are of extreme importance in this modern era. This is due to the profound role of organohalides as pharmaceuticals, agrochemicals and valuable synthons in various organic reactions. As organic synthetic intermediates, halogenated molecules are of particular importance in many metal-catalysed cross-coupling reactions. Nature has evolved a number of biocatalysts to regioselectively halogenate a diverse range of biosynthetic precursors and secondary metabolites, and this unexplored repertoire is ever growing. Biosynthetic halogenation can occur over simple to extremely complex ring structures of natural compounds and in some cases, it initiates the formation of complex structures and scaffolds. These reactions often range from simple aromatic substitutions to complex stereoselective C-H functionalization and activation of remote carbon centres. These reliable, facile and cleaner biosynthetic routes have potential utility and greater demand over traditional nonenzymatic halogenation chemistry that requires deleterious reagents and lacks regio-control. In the past few years we have identified a number of pharmaceutically important halogenase systems by genome mining in natural product pathways. In this project, we are planning to explore their enzyme structure, substrate scope along with their potential applications in organic synthesis. The ultimate aim is to incorporate these enzymes in to synthetic and biosynthetic pathways and into various natural product pathways for biotechnological and pharmaceutical applications.


10 25 50

Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
BB/M01116X/1 01/10/2015 30/09/2023
2265874 Studentship BB/M01116X/1 30/09/2019 29/09/2023 Daniel Thomas Richmond