Catalytic antibodies: a new window on protein chemistry

C J Suckling, C M Tedford, G R Proctor, A I Khalaf, L M Bence, W H Stimson

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Catalytic antibodies have created a new dimension in protein chemistry. In these studies it is particularly valuable to investigate systems for which natural enzymic catalysts are unknown. At Strathclyde we have examined several ways of preparing homochiral building blocks for organic synthesis. Antibodies that catalyse the Diels-Alder reaction have been characterized. The target reaction was the addition of acetoxybutadiene to N-substituted maleimides, a reaction that should give a pentafunctional homochiral building block. Catalytic antibodies can give insight into the mechanism of catalysis by proteins. We have investigated an adventitious hydrolytic antibody that cleaves activated esters. We have also shown that an antibody raised to ampicillin for analytical purposes catalyses hydrolysis of the beta-lactam ring.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)216-220
Number of pages5
JournalBiochemical Society Transactions
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1992


  • Animals
  • Antibodies/metabolism
  • Antibody Formation/physiology
  • Catalysis
  • Hydrolysis
  • Molecular Structure
  • Proteins/chemistry


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