Richter, J.M.; Ishihara, Y.; Masuda, T.; Whitefield, B.W.; Llamas, T.; Pohjakallio, A.; Baran, P.S. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2008, 130, 17938-17954.
The hapalindole family of natural products has been growing ever since the isolation of its first members in nearly 30 years ago. Bringing with them a wide array of biological activities, the hapalindoles are now synthesized regularly. A new reaction method proposed by Richter, et. al. may just make their synthesis even easier.
"The times are tumultuous, and in such trying times, we must, as individuals and scientists ourselves, try harder to improve the world and spread about its goodness. But to know the good, one must first know the bad. And the worst of all and greed, lust, envy, pride, gluttony, wrath, and sloth: the 7 deadly sins that pervade all of our lives, and certainly the chemistry around us."
Maimone, T.J.; Shi, J.; Ashida, S.; Baran, P.S. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2009, 131, 17066-17067.
The synthesis of diterpene vinigrol has long posed problems due to the sterics of the ring system and its eight stereocenters. In this paper, the authors outline the total synthesis of this complicated, but biologically important molecule.
"After considering many possible themes such as superhero's, our love of food pulled us toward exploring international cuisine. Learn chemistry, ogle pretty pictures of food (most of which you will never be able to make) and after hunger has been properly induced choose between Italian, Indian, French, German, Chinese or Greek food for you next meal."
Fortner, K. C.; Kato, D.; Tanaka, Y.; Shair, M. D. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2010, 132, 275-280.
Cephalostatin 1 is an intriguing drug which possibly possesses the unique property of selectively killing cancer cells and not normal cells in a process dubbed "synthetic lethality" by targeting mutant p16 tumor suppressor genes. To further understand its mechanism of action, Fortner et al. under Matthew Shair at Harvard University enantioselectively synthesized cephalostatin with hopes to explore its therapeutic potential as an anti-cancer drug..
"Connecting with their past, the students of SSG 3 decided to bring back times when life was a little less hectic - when recess was the favorite time of day, when Gameboy was the system of choice, when Oregon Trail made everything seem right with the world, when movies were watched on VCRs, and when naptime was as regular as it is now. Seeing as the students of this class are truly 90's children, they decided to reminisce about the Shows of the 90's! Take a ride on the Magic School Bus and sit back and relax with Hey Arnold, ER, The Justice League, Pinky and the Brain, Dragon Ball Z, The Simpson's, and South Park while learning a little bit of chemistry along the way."
Gao, S.; Wang, Q.; Huang, L. J.; Lum, L.; Chen, C. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2010, 132, 371-383.
Nakiterpiosin and nakiterpiosinone are two related C-nor-D-homosteroids isolated from Terpios hoshinota, a thin encrusting sponge that harbor large amounts of symbiotic bacteria. Nakiterpiosin shows promise as an anticancer agent in tumors resistant to existing antimitotic agents and those dependent on Hedgehog signal transduction pathway responses for growth. Shuanhu, et al. provide detailed information on the stereochemical analysis and a refined approach for synthesis of nakiterpiosin and nakiterpriosione.
""The name's Bond, James Bond." The students of SSG4 need his help to investigate the chemical kind of "bond." Don't miss out on an exciting adventure through some of Bond's greatest movies: Die Another Day, The Man With the Golden Gun, The Living Daylights, Diamonds Are Forever, Goldfinger, Dr. No and From Russia With Love. Grab your fancy watch and Armani suit. We leave no stone unturned, no villain unshot and no reaction uncited!"
Nicolaou, K. C.; Tria, G. S.; Edmonds, D. J.; Kar, M. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2009, 131, 15909-15917.
The secondary metabolite of the bacterial strain Streptomyces platensis, Platencin, shows potent antibacterial activity against Gram positive bacteria, through dual inhibition of the bacterial lipid elongation enzymes FabF and FabH. Nicolau et al. of the Scripps Research Institute demonstrate the racemic synthesis of platencin.
"A mysterious bacterial infection has been quietly rippling through the University of Michigan, leaving its sinister tracks in the form of seriously ill students and faculty. Toiling day and night, the few who are still well have managed to discover that a Gram-positive strain of bacteria, with an extensive lipid membrane, is the culprit. Professor Koreeda is one of the lucky ones: barricaded in his office, he has managed to effectively avoid the epidemic outside and escape the fatal jaws of the terrible disease! One morning, Dr. Koreeda comes to a startling insight, upon reading a recent publication by Nicolaou, et al. Dr. Koreeda realizes that this is exactly what will put an end to the senseless deaths! Unfortunately, Nicolau et al. cannot ship their product to Michigan. Join Dr. Koreeda and the students of SSG 5 on his quest through the UM Campus, to find the materials he needs to synthesize Platencin, before it's too late!"
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