Enantioselective biotransformations using rhodococci

Timothy M. Beard, Michael I. Page

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


The use of enzymes and whole cells in enantioselective biotransformation reactions is briefly reviewed. A Rhodococcus strain is shown to possess nitrile hydratase and amidase activity. The organism can be used for the enantioselective biotransformation of racemic α-amino amides to (S) α-amino acids with an enantiomeric excess (ee) of > 98%. Enantioselectivity is effectively time independent allowing easy quantitative conversion of racemic mixtures into enantiomerically pure α-amino amides and α-amino acids. The reaction is effective for a wide range of α-substituents. The pH-dependence of the reaction indicates that the α-amino amide is bound to the amidase enzyme in its neutral unprotonated form.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-106
Number of pages8
JournalAntonie van Leeuwenhoek, International Journal of General and Molecular Microbiology
Issue number1-3
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1998


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