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Challenging nature’s preference for methylation

Enzymes that methylate using S-adenosyl-l-methionine — nature’s methyliodide — are abundant and often promiscuous; however, a preference for alkylation over methylation has been neither observed in nature nor engineered. Now, carboxymethylation has been demonstrated using engineered methyltransferases.

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Fig. 1: Enzymatic alkylation, carboxymethylation and carboxyalkylation.


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Correspondence to Jennifer N. Andexer or Andrea Rentmeister.

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Andexer, J.N., Rentmeister, A. Challenging nature’s preference for methylation. Nat. Chem. 12, 791–792 (2020).

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