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Special Issue "Chirality in Health and Environment: Recent developments"

A special issue of Molecules (ISSN 1420-3049). This special issue belongs to the section "Organic Synthesis".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2017)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Madalena M. M. Pinto

Laboratório de Química Orgânica e Farmacêutica, Departamento de Ciências, Químicas, Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade do Porto, Rua Jorge Viterbo Ferreira 228, 4050-313, Porto, Portugal; Centro Interdisciplinar de Investigação Marinha e Ambiental (CIIMAR/CIMAR), Universidade do Porto, Rua dos Bragas 289, 4050-123 Porto, Portugal
Website | E-Mail
Interests: medicinal chemistry; drug discovery and drug design; synthesis and bioenantioselectivity studies of chiral bioactive compounds, as well as studies of structure-activity and structure-properties relationships; molecular recognition-artificial receptors as new chiral stationary phases for HPLC
Guest Editor
Assist. Prof. Carla Fernandes

CIIMAR and Laboratório de Química Orgânica e Farmacêutica, Departamento de Ciências Químicas, Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade do Porto, Porto, Portugal
Website | E-Mail
Interests: design and synthesis of chiral compounds with potential biological activity as well as chiral stationary phases for liquid chromatography; analytical and preparative enantiomeric separation of racemic mixtures and studies of chiral recognition mechanisms

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

It is well known that the environment and human health are directly connected in many ways, with chirality interrelating both areas; why is this?

Human beings, as well as many biological molecules, are chiral, including numerous natural products and several substances created by man, interacting with the environment.

Life on Earth, as we know it, depends on chiral molecules, and the recent discovery of an astronomical chiral molecule, propylene oxide, representative of the earliest stage of solar system evolution, makes us believe that, as far as the subject matter of chirality is concerned, “the sky is the limit”!

This progress results of several inter/transdisciplinary fields from, among others, physics, chemistry and biology, which are very challenging for researchers involved in these areas.

This Special Issue is intended to highlight and update the state-of-the-art and recent progress in several topics, namely:

  • Chirality in daily life: Chemical communication among humans; importance of odor (flavors and fragrances; perception of chiral odorants) and taste (artificial sweeteners); chiral cosmetics and personal care products.
  • Chirality in chemical and pharmaceutical industries.
  • Chiral drugs/pharmaceuticals.
  • Chirality of molecules from nature.
  • Chiral xenobiotics in marine and terrestrial ecosystems.
  • Chiral analysis.

Prof. Madalena Pinto
Assist. Prof. Carla Fernandes
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Molecules is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Chirality
  • Chiral molecules
  • Health
  • Environment

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

Jump to: Review

Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Chiral Thioxanthones as Modulators of P-glycoprotein: Synthesis and Enantioselectivity Studies
Molecules 2018, 23(3), 626; doi:10.3390/molecules23030626
Received: 7 February 2018 / Revised: 5 March 2018 / Accepted: 7 March 2018 / Published: 10 March 2018
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Abstract
Recently, thioxanthone derivatives were found to protect cells against toxic P-glycoprotein (P-gp) substrates, acting as potent inducers/activators of this efflux pump. The study of new P-gp chiral modulators produced from thioxanthone derivatives could clarify the enantioselectivity of this ABC transporter towards this new
[...] Read more.
Recently, thioxanthone derivatives were found to protect cells against toxic P-glycoprotein (P-gp) substrates, acting as potent inducers/activators of this efflux pump. The study of new P-gp chiral modulators produced from thioxanthone derivatives could clarify the enantioselectivity of this ABC transporter towards this new class of modulators. The aim of this study was to evaluate the P-gp modulatory ability of four enantiomeric pairs of new synthesized chiral aminated thioxanthones (ATxs) 18, studying the influence of the stereochemistry on P-gp induction/ activation in cultured Caco-2 cells. The data displayed that all the tested compounds (at 20 μM) significantly decreased the intracellular accumulation of a P-gp fluorescent substrate (rhodamine 123) when incubated simultaneously for 60 min, demonstrating an increased activity of the efflux, when compared to control cells. Additionally, all of them except ATx 3 (+), caused similar results when the accumulation of the P-gp fluorescent substrate was evaluated after pre-incubating cells with the test compounds for 24 h, significantly reducing the rhodamine 123 intracellular accumulation as a result of a significant increase in P-gp activity. However, ATx 2 (−) was the only derivative that, after 24 h of incubation, significantly increased P-gp expression. These results demonstrated a significantly increased P-gp activity, even without an increase in P-gp expression. Therefore, ATxs 18 were shown to behave as P-gp activators. Furthermore, no significant differences were detected in the activity of the protein when comparing the enantiomeric pairs. Nevertheless, ATx 2 (−) modulates P-gp expression differently from its enantiomer, ATx 1 (+). These results disclosed new activators and inducers of P-gp and highlight the existence of enantioselectivity in the induction mechanism. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chirality in Health and Environment: Recent developments)
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Open AccessArticle Enantiomeric Resolution and Docking Studies of Chiral Xanthonic Derivatives on Chirobiotic Columns
Molecules 2018, 23(1), 142; doi:10.3390/molecules23010142
Received: 29 November 2017 / Revised: 6 January 2018 / Accepted: 8 January 2018 / Published: 11 January 2018
PDF Full-text (3440 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
A systematic study of enantioresolution of a library of xanthonic derivatives, prepared “in-house”, was successfully carried out with four commercially available macrocyclic glycopeptide-based columns, namely ChirobioticTM T, ChirobioticTM R, ChirobioticTM V and ChirobioticTM TAG. Evaluation was conducted in multimodal
[...] Read more.
A systematic study of enantioresolution of a library of xanthonic derivatives, prepared “in-house”, was successfully carried out with four commercially available macrocyclic glycopeptide-based columns, namely ChirobioticTM T, ChirobioticTM R, ChirobioticTM V and ChirobioticTM TAG. Evaluation was conducted in multimodal elution conditions: normal-phase, polar organic, polar ionic and reversed-phase. The effects of the mobile phase composition, the percentage of organic modifier, the pH of the mobile phase, the nature and concentration of different mobile phase additives on the chromatographic parameters are discussed. ChirobioticTM T and ChirobioticTM V, under normal-phase and reversed-phase modes, respectively, presented the best chromatographic parameters. Considering the importance of understanding the chiral recognition mechanisms associated with the chromatographic enantioresolution, and the scarce data available for macrocyclic glycopeptide-based columns, computational studies by molecular docking were also carried out. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chirality in Health and Environment: Recent developments)
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Open AccessArticle Discrimination of Stereoisomers by Their Enantioselective Interactions with Chiral Cholesterol-Containing Membranes
Molecules 2018, 23(1), 49; doi:10.3390/molecules23010049
Received: 30 November 2017 / Revised: 22 December 2017 / Accepted: 22 December 2017 / Published: 25 December 2017
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Abstract
Discrimination between enantiomers is an important subject in medicinal and biological chemistry because they exhibit markedly different bioactivity and toxicity. Although stereoisomers should vary in the mechanistic interactions with chiral targets, their discrimination associated with the mode of action on membrane lipids is
[...] Read more.
Discrimination between enantiomers is an important subject in medicinal and biological chemistry because they exhibit markedly different bioactivity and toxicity. Although stereoisomers should vary in the mechanistic interactions with chiral targets, their discrimination associated with the mode of action on membrane lipids is scarce. The aim of this study is to reveal whether enantiomers selectively act on chiral lipid membranes. Different classes of stereoisomers were subjected at 5–200 μM to reactions with biomimetic phospholipid membranes containing ~40 mol % cholesterol to endow the lipid bilayers with chirality and their membrane interactions were comparatively evaluated by measuring fluorescence polarization. All of the tested compounds interacted with cholesterol-containing membranes to modify their physicochemical property with different potencies between enantiomers, correlating to those of their experimental and clinical effects. The rank order of membrane interactivity was reversed by changing cholesterol to C3-epimeric α-cholesterol. The same selectivity was also obtained from membranes prepared with 5α-cholestan-3β-ol and 5β-cholestan-3α-ol diastereomers. The opposite configuration allows molecules to interact with chiral sterol-containing membranes enantioselectively, and the specific β configuration of cholesterol’s 3-hydroxyl group is responsible for such selectivity. The enantioselective membrane interaction has medicinal implications for the characterization of the stereostructures with higher bioactivity and lower toxicity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chirality in Health and Environment: Recent developments)
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Open AccessCommunication Chiral Symmetry Breaking in Magnetoelectrochemical Etching with Chloride Additives
Molecules 2018, 23(1), 19; doi:10.3390/molecules23010019
Received: 29 November 2017 / Revised: 19 December 2017 / Accepted: 20 December 2017 / Published: 22 December 2017
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Abstract
Magnetoelectrolysis (electrolysis under magnetic fields) produces chiral surfaces on metal thin films, which can recognize the enantiomers of amino acids. Here, the chiral surface formation on copper films is reported in magnetoelectrochemical etching (MEE) at 5T with chloride additives. In the absence of
[...] Read more.
Magnetoelectrolysis (electrolysis under magnetic fields) produces chiral surfaces on metal thin films, which can recognize the enantiomers of amino acids. Here, the chiral surface formation on copper films is reported in magnetoelectrochemical etching (MEE) at 5T with chloride additives. In the absence of additives, the surface chirality signs of MEE films depended on the magnetic field polarity. On the contrary, the MEE films prepared with the additives exhibited only d-activity in both magnetic field polarities. This result implies that the specific adsorption of chloride additives induces the chiral symmetry breaking for the magnetic field polarity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chirality in Health and Environment: Recent developments)
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Open AccessArticle Enantiomeric-Enriched Ferrocenes: Synthesis, Chiral Resolution, and Mathematic Evaluation of CD-chiral Selector Energies with Ferrocene-Conjugates
Molecules 2017, 22(9), 1410; doi:10.3390/molecules22091410
Received: 14 July 2017 / Revised: 23 August 2017 / Accepted: 24 August 2017 / Published: 25 August 2017
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Abstract
Enantiomeric-enriched ferrocene-modified pyrazoles were synthesized via the reaction of the ferrocene alcohol, (S)-FcCH(OH)CH3 (Fc = ferrocenyl), with various pyrazoles in acidic conditions at room temperature within several minutes. X-ray structural data for racemic (R,S)-1N-(3,5-dimethyl
[...] Read more.
Enantiomeric-enriched ferrocene-modified pyrazoles were synthesized via the reaction of the ferrocene alcohol, (S)-FcCH(OH)CH3 (Fc = ferrocenyl), with various pyrazoles in acidic conditions at room temperature within several minutes. X-ray structural data for racemic (R,S)-1N-(3,5-dimethyl pyrazolyl)ethyl ferrocene (1) and its (S)-enantiomer (S)-1 were determined. A series of racemic pyrazolylalkyl ferrocenes was separated into enantiomers by analytical HPLC on β- and γ-cyclodextrins (CD) chiral stationary phases. The quantum chemical calculations of interaction energies of β-CD were carried out for both (R)- and (S)-enantiomers. A high correlation between experimental HPLC data and calculated interaction energies values was obtained. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chirality in Health and Environment: Recent developments)
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Review

Jump to: Research

Open AccessFeature PaperReview Enantiomeric Mixtures in Natural Product Chemistry: Separation and Absolute Configuration Assignment
Molecules 2018, 23(2), 492; doi:10.3390/molecules23020492
Received: 21 December 2017 / Revised: 23 January 2018 / Accepted: 21 February 2018 / Published: 23 February 2018
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Abstract
Chiral natural product molecules are generally assumed to be biosynthesized in an enantiomerically pure or enriched fashion. Nevertheless, a significant amount of racemates or enantiomerically enriched mixtures has been reported from natural sources. This number is estimated to be even larger since the
[...] Read more.
Chiral natural product molecules are generally assumed to be biosynthesized in an enantiomerically pure or enriched fashion. Nevertheless, a significant amount of racemates or enantiomerically enriched mixtures has been reported from natural sources. This number is estimated to be even larger since the enantiomeric purity of secondary metabolites is rarely checked in the natural product isolation pipeline. This latter fact may have drastic effects on the evaluation of the biological activity of chiral natural products. A second bottleneck is the determination of their absolute configurations. Despite the widespread use of optical rotation and electronic circular dichroism, most of the stereochemical assignments are based on empirical correlations with similar compounds reported in the literature. As an alternative, the combination of vibrational circular dichroism and quantum chemical calculations has emerged as a powerful and reliable tool for both conformational and configurational analysis of natural products, even for those lacking UV-Vis chromophores. In this review, we aim to provide the reader with a critical overview of the occurrence of enantiomeric mixtures of secondary metabolites in nature as well the best practices for their detection, enantioselective separation using liquid chromatography, and determination of absolute configuration by means of vibrational circular dichroism and density functional theory calculations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chirality in Health and Environment: Recent developments)
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview Marine Natural Peptides: Determination of Absolute Configuration Using Liquid Chromatography Methods and Evaluation of Bioactivities
Molecules 2018, 23(2), 306; doi:10.3390/molecules23020306
Received: 30 December 2017 / Revised: 22 January 2018 / Accepted: 27 January 2018 / Published: 31 January 2018
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Abstract
Over the last decades, many naturally occurring peptides have attracted the attention of medicinal chemists due to their promising applicability as pharmaceuticals or as models for drugs used in therapeutics. Marine peptides are chiral molecules comprising different amino acid residues. Therefore, it is
[...] Read more.
Over the last decades, many naturally occurring peptides have attracted the attention of medicinal chemists due to their promising applicability as pharmaceuticals or as models for drugs used in therapeutics. Marine peptides are chiral molecules comprising different amino acid residues. Therefore, it is essential to establish the configuration of the stereogenic carbon of their amino acid constituents for a total characterization and further synthesis to obtain higher amount of the bioactive marine peptides or as a basis for structural modifications for more potent derivatives. Moreover, it is also a crucial issue taking into account the mechanisms of molecular recognition and the influence of molecular three-dimensionality in this process. In this review, a literature survey covering the report on the determination of absolute configuration of the amino acid residues of diverse marine peptides by chromatographic methodologies is presented. A brief summary of their biological activities was also included emphasizing to the most promising marine peptides. A case study describing an experience of our group was also included. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chirality in Health and Environment: Recent developments)
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview Chiral Drug Analysis in Forensic Chemistry: An Overview
Molecules 2018, 23(2), 262; doi:10.3390/molecules23020262
Received: 30 December 2017 / Revised: 19 January 2018 / Accepted: 25 January 2018 / Published: 28 January 2018
PDF Full-text (13174 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Many substances of forensic interest are chiral and available either as racemates or pure enantiomers. Application of chiral analysis in biological samples can be useful for the determination of legal or illicit drugs consumption or interpretation of unexpected toxicological effects. Chiral substances can
[...] Read more.
Many substances of forensic interest are chiral and available either as racemates or pure enantiomers. Application of chiral analysis in biological samples can be useful for the determination of legal or illicit drugs consumption or interpretation of unexpected toxicological effects. Chiral substances can also be found in environmental samples and revealed to be useful for determination of community drug usage (sewage epidemiology), identification of illicit drug manufacturing locations, illegal discharge of sewage and in environmental risk assessment. Thus, the purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the application of chiral analysis in biological and environmental samples and their relevance in the forensic field. Most frequently analytical methods used to quantify the enantiomers are liquid and gas chromatography using both indirect, with enantiomerically pure derivatizing reagents, and direct methods recurring to chiral stationary phases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chirality in Health and Environment: Recent developments)
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