Professor Jonathan Clayden's Group: New publication
The group of Professor Jonathan Clayden has reported in Chemical Science (Chem. Sci. 2015, in press, DOI: 10.1039/c4sc03944k) an analysis of the way that conformational preferences decay exponentially with distance in extended helical molecules.
Liam Byrne and Bryden Le Bailly synthesized a series of extended peptide-like molecules containing NMR reporter groups, which they studied using spectroscopic techniques including those developed by Mohammadali Foroozandeh in Gareth Morris' NMR group. The results show that, especially in the hydrophobic solvents that mimic the interior of cell membranes, helical preferences can persist with the same screw sense for many hundreds of residues, even in the absence of the local chiral influences usually needed to maintain helical structures. These results are being used to develop potential new mimics of biological receptors that may allow communication through biological and synthetic membranes.