A chemo-enzymatic oxidation cascade to activate C–H bonds with in situ generated H2O2

Journal: Nature Communications

Published: 2019-09-13

DOI: 10.1038/s41467-019-12120-w

Affiliations: 7

Authors: 12

Go to article

Research Highlight

Perfecting peroxide production



A greener method for selectively activating C–H bonds to make value-added chemicals could stem from a new chemo-enzymatic oxidation reaction.

Environmentally friendly enzymes called unspecific peroxygenases (UPOs) can catalyse a wide range of potentially commercially valuable oxidation reactions. They use hydrogen peroxide as an oxygen source for these transformations, and the only by-product is water. However, UPOs are quickly deactivated if the hydrogen peroxide concentration climbs too high, which creates challenges for scaling up.

Now, a team that included University of Cape Town researchers has developed catalytic gold–platinum nanoparticles that convert hydrogen and oxygen into a steady stream of hydrogen peroxide. The nanoparticles could be combined with UPOs in a single pot, creating a scalable chemo-enzymatic reaction system for installing hydroxyl groups in a wide range of organic starting materials.

Supported content

  1. Nature Communications 10, 4178 (2020). doi: 10.1038/s41467-019-12120-w
Institutions Share
DST-NRF Centre of Excellence in Catalysis in South Africa (c*change), South Africa 0.29
Cardiff University, United Kingdom (UK) 0.21
University of the Free State (UFS), South Africa 0.21
University of Cape Town (UCT), South Africa 0.08
BASF SE, Germany 0.08
Institute of Catalysis and Petrochemistry (ICP), CSIC, Spain 0.08
University of Bath, United Kingdom (UK) 0.04