Institut de Chimie Moléculaire et des Matériaux d'Orsay

Laboratoire de Chimie Bioorganique et Bioinorganique - LCBB

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Theme 2 (J.-P. Mahy)
Design and synthesis of new metal complexes
and study of their interactions with biomolecules

R. Ricoux, F. Avenier, W. Ghattas, J.-P. Mahy


The activities developed in theme 2 build on the Group's internationally recognized know-how in Bioinorganic Chemistry for:

  • the development of biomimetic systems of heme metalloenzymes (hemoproteins: Cyt. P450, peroxidases ...) and non-heme metalloenzymes (hydroxylases mono- and bi-nuclear iron, methane monooxygenase ...), from transition metal complexes, metalloporphyrins or mono- or bi-metallic non-porphyrinic complexes,

  • the design of artificial metalloenzymes by insertion of metal complexes in various proteins according to three strategies: host-guest, Trojan and covalent attachment.

The main objectives of the projects developed are the elaboration and mechanistic study of new selective and effective (bio)-catalysts that can be used under eco-compatible conditions (solvent = H2O, room temperature and pressure) and which have potential applications in fine chemistry, depollution, renewable energies and therapeutics / theranostics:

1- Oxidation reactions :
Iron mono-oxygenases biomimetic systems: Cytochromes P450 (P450), peroxydases et methane mono-oxygenase (MMO).

Objectives : Designing new complexes/biomimetic systems for:

A - Catalysing key reactions in various domains:

-Enantioselectives oxidations of substrats: sulfides, aromatics, alkenes usable in fine chemistry (production of metabolites),
-Oil chemistry : oxidation of hydrocarbons
-Depollution : oxidation of toxid dyes, oil pollutants(dibenzothiophene) and polyhalogenated aromatics.

  1. Artificial metalloenzymes for enantioselective oxidation catalysis (xylanases, a-Rep, b-lactoglobuline)
    R. Ricoux

  2. Photocatalytic oxidations by artificial Ru-metalloenzymes
    R. Ricoux

  3. Bio-inspired oxidation catalysts for a more environmentally friendly chemistry
    F. Avenier

  4. Insertion of metalloenzymes into “Metal Organic Frameworks“ (MOF) : new catalysts for oxidative decontamination reactions
    R. Ricoux
    (in collaboration with Inst. Lavoisier Versailles, labEx CHARM3AT)


B - Performing water oxidation:
-Decarbonated energies: production of new fuels.


C - Elucidating some mechanistic aspects of 2-iron mono-oxygenases:


2- Enantioselective reactions

Objective: Developing new artificial complexes / biomimetic systems and metalloenzymes to catalyze enantioselective reactions for synthesis of:

- Hydrolysis ofphosphodiesters
- Diels-Alder et reductions
- Creation of C-C bonds

  1. Design of artificial metalloenzymes (Artzymes) for applications in enantioselective catalysis
    R. Ricoux, W. Ghattas

  2. Chemistry of creation of C-C bonds by radical SAM enzymes (artificial or not)
    R. Ricoux, W. Ghattas, F. Avenier
    (ANR Carb2zyme 2017)

  3. Design of tools for screening biocatalysts of bimolecular Diels-Alder reactions
    W. Ghattas
    (in collaboration with Lab. COBRA, Rouen, labExes CHARM3AT and Synorg)


3-Reactions for therapy and diagnosis

Objective: Designing artificial enzymes which are anchored to the living cell surface and which can be used to catalyze in vivo the discovery of pro-drugs (therapy) and / or pro-sensors (imaging, diagnosis).