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Keywords:

  • catalytic promiscuity;
  • molecular modeling;
  • enzymes;
  • molecular dynamics;
  • nucleophilic addition
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

Blank reaction! The cover picture shows how hydroxynitrile lyases do not catalyze the addition of cyanide to an imine, which is mediated rather by the water present in the reaction media. In their Communication on p. 1304 ff., G. Torrelo et al. report that this addition, which is part of the classical Strecker synthesis, occurs in a non-enzymatic way and two structurally different hydroxynitrile lyases do not catalyze this reaction. These results discard the promiscuous catalytic activity attributed to these enzymes more than 10 years ago.