Microwave-induced inactivation of DNA-based hybrid catalyst in asymmetric catalysis

Hua Zhao, Kai Shen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


DNA-based hybrid catalysts have gained strong interests in asymmetric reactions. However, to maintain the high enantioselectivity, these reactions are usually conducted at relatively low temperatures (e.g. <5. °C) for 2-3 days. Aiming to improve the reaction's turnover rate, we evaluated microwave irradiation with simultaneous cooling as potential energy source since this method has been widely used to accelerate various chemical and enzymatic reactions. However, our data indicated that microwave irradiation induced an inactivation of DNA-based hybrid catalyst even at low temperatures (such as 5. °C). Circular dichroism (CD) spectra and gel electrophoresis of DNA suggest that microwave exposure degrades DNA molecules and disrupts DNA double-stranded structures, causing changes of DNA-metal ligand binding properties and thus poor DNA catalytic performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)367-371
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Biological Macromolecules
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
HZ acknowledges the supports by the Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award (2012–2017), NIH MBRS-RISE grant ( 1R25GM096956 ), NIH NIBIB contract award (HHSN268201200011C), and National Natural Science Foundation of China ( 21328601 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Elsevier B.V.


  • Asymmetric catalysis
  • DNA-based hybrid catalyst
  • Michael addition
  • Microwave irradiation
  • Simultaneous cooling


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