Four enzymes showing hydrolytic activity on derivatives of 2-azabicyclo[2.2.1]hept-5-en-3-one (Vince lactam) were successfully identified through analysis of protein crystal structure and amino acid sequence alignments. Enantiocomplementary activities were observed on Vince lactam and its saturated analog 2-azabicyclo[2.2.1]heptan-3-one with non-heme chloroperoxidase (CPO-T) from Streptomyces aureofaciens, cyclic imide hydrolase (CIH) from Pseudomonas putida, polyamidase (NfpolyA) from Nocardia farcinica, and amidase (AMI) from Rhodococcus globerulus, and perfect kinetic resolution was achieved (E>200). Computational analysis of amide bond resonance stabilization in lactams correlated well with the overall reactivity pattern of the lactams as a function of ring size and strain. The biocatalysts cloned and investigated in this study could be of interest for the synthesis of enantiopure carbocyclic nucleoside analogues.
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