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Pure Appl. Chem., 2005, Vol. 77, No. 1, pp. 209-226

Biocatalytic routes toward pharmaceutically important precursors and novel polymeric systems

Sunil K. Sharma1,2,3, Mofazzal Husain1, Rajesh Kumar2,3, Lynne A. Samuelson4, Jayant Kumar2, Arthur C. Watterson3 and Virinder S. Parmar1

1 Bioorganic Laboratory, Department of Chemistry, University of Delhi, Delhi 110 007, India
2 Center for Advanced Materials, Departments of Chemistry and Physics, University of Massachusetts, Lowell, MA 01854, USA
3 INSET, Department of Chemistry, University of Massachusetts, Lowell, MA 01854, USA
4 Natick Soldier Center, U.S. Army Soldier and Biological Chemical Command, Kansas Street, Natick, MA 01760, USA

Abstract: The synthetic potential of enzymes related to organic synthesis has been applied profusely, especially since the introduction of their use in organic solvents. Enzymes offer the opportunity to carry out highly chemo-, regio-, and enantioselective transformations. The use of enzymes in the synthetic sequence provides unique advantages of efficiency and environmental friendliness. Owing to their low cost and applicability to a broad range of substrates, lipases have become the most versatile class of biocatalysts in organic synthesis. We have screened a battery of lipases to carry out highly selective reactions for the synthesis of a wide range of organic compounds and polymeric materials.