Biosynthesis articles from across Nature Portfolio

Biosynthesis is the generation of natural products through enzymatic reactions, as in cellular metabolism. Successive enzymatic reactions by a number of enzymes are generally required to achieve a single biologically active compound. Biosynthesis can be exploited for chemical synthesis in vitro or in cells like Escherichia coli by combining substrates with enzymes using recombinant methods.

Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • News & Views |

    Assembly and functionalization of biologically active steroids continue to pose a synthetic challenge. Now, mining and engineering of selective P450 C–H hydroxylases provide a biocatalytic C14–H hydroxylation, which can be integrated into chemoenzymatic syntheses of C14-functionalized steroids.

    • Liupeng Zhao
    • , Zhiyu Bo
    •  & Yang Yang
  • News & Views |

    2+2-cycloaddition reactions have long been considered key transformations in the biosynthesis of cyclobutane-containing natural products, but enzymes for these reactions have not yet been identified. Now, a 2+2 cyclase has been discovered, characterized and bioengineered to catalyse cycloadditions with different selectivity.

    • Bo Zhang
    •  & Hui Ming Ge
    Nature Chemistry 15, 167-169
  • News & Views |

    Inspired by nature, a synthetic carbon fixation cycle builds complex molecules directly from CO2. Building metabolism from the ground up requires several innovative advancements — now, a strategy to balance carbon demands in a complex metabolic network is explored.

    • Grant M. Landwehr
    •  & Michael C. Jewett