Partial Synthesis of an Unnatural Amino Acid
Arts and Sciences
Unnatural fluorescent amino acids are important tools that allow biochemists to visualize proteins in living cells. The addition of an unnatural fluorescent amino acid makes these normally transparent proteins, glow-in-the-dark. The goal of this research is to synthesize a benzoxadiazole-based fluorescent amino acid. After numerous failed attempts to complete the key coupling step using nucleophilic aromatic substitution, a palladium catalyst was found to yield the desired product. Once the synthesis of this fluorescent amino acid is complete, a screening system will be used to determine whether or not it can be incorporated into proteins.
Salim, Arman D., "Partial Synthesis of an Unnatural Amino Acid" (2015). Symposium on Undergraduate Research and Creative Expression (SOURCE). 474.