Next Article in Journal
Exploring the Kamchatka Geothermal Region in the Context of Life’s Beginning
Previous Article in Journal
Developmental Biology in Cyanobacteria
Open AccessCommunication

Chemistry of Homocysteine Thiolactone in A Prebiotic Perspective

CNRS, Département de Chimie Moléculaire, Univ. Grenoble Alpes, Campus, F-38058 Grenoble, France
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 17 April 2019 / Revised: 14 May 2019 / Accepted: 14 May 2019 / Published: 16 May 2019
Homocysteine is a non-proteinogenic sulfur-containing amino acid. Like cysteine, it can form disulfide bridges and complex metallic cations. It is also closely related to methionine, the first amino acid in the synthesis of all contemporary proteins. Furthermore, its cyclized form, a five-membered ring thiolactone, is stable in acidic and neutral water. Here, we demonstrate that this thiolactone may have been formed in the primitive ocean directly from the Strecker precursor of homocysteine, an aminonitrile. Even though it is poorly reactive, this thiolactone may be open by some amines, yielding amides which, in turn, could be the precursors of longer peptides. View Full-Text
Keywords: origin of life; prebiotic chemistry; thioester world; amino acids; homocysteine origin of life; prebiotic chemistry; thioester world; amino acids; homocysteine
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

MDPI and ACS Style

Shalayel, I.; Vallée, Y. Chemistry of Homocysteine Thiolactone in A Prebiotic Perspective. Life 2019, 9, 40.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop