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    Publication Date: 2018-12-14
    Description: Primordial sequence signatures in modern proteins imply ancestral origins tracing back to simple peptides. Although short peptides seldom adopt unique folds, metal ions might have templated their assembly into higher-order structures in early evolution and imparted useful chemical reactivity. Recapitulating such a biogenetic scenario, we have combined design and laboratory evolution to transform a zinc-binding peptide into a globular enzyme capable of accelerating ester cleavage with exacting enantiospecificity and high catalytic efficiency ( k cat / K M ~ 10 6 M –1 s –1 ). The simultaneous optimization of structure and function in a naïve peptide scaffold not only illustrates a plausible enzyme evolutionary pathway from the distant past to the present but also proffers exciting future opportunities for enzyme design and engineering.
    Keywords: Biochemistry
    Print ISSN: 0036-8075
    Electronic ISSN: 1095-9203
    Topics: Biology , Chemistry and Pharmacology , Geosciences , Computer Science , Medicine , Natural Sciences in General , Physics
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