The sperm whale myoglobin active site mutants (L29H/H64L and F43H/H64L Mb) have been shown to catalyze the asymmetric oxidation of sulfides and olefins. Thioanisole, ethyl phenyl sulfide, and cis-β-methylstyrene are oxidized by L29H/H64L Mb with more than 95% enantiomeric excess (% ee). On the other hand, the F43H/H64L mutant transforms trans-β-methylstyrene into the trans-epoxide with 96% ee. The dominant sulfoxide product in the incubation of alkyl phenyl thioethers is the R isomer; however, the mutants afford dominantly the S isomer of aromatic bicyclic sulfoxides. The results help us to rationalize the difference in the preferred stereochemistry of the Mb mutant-catalyzed reactions. Furthermore, the Mb mutants exhibit an improvement in the oxidation rate up to 300-fold with respect to wild type.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Organic Chemistry
- Inorganic Chemistry