• Biotransformations of water insoluble substrates in aqueous, two-phase and encapsulated systems /

      Iezzi, Diana.; Department of Chemistry (Brock University, 1999-05-21)
      The biotransformation of water insoluble substrates by mammalian and bacterial cells has been problematic, since these whole cell reactions are primarily performed in an aqueous environment The implementation of a twophase or encapsulated system has the advantages of providing a low water system along with the physiological environment the cells require to sustain themselves. Encapsulation of mammalian cells by formation of polyamide capsules via interfacial polymerization illustrated that the cells could not survive this type of encapsulation process. Biotransformation of the steroid spironolactone [3] by human kidney carcinoma cells was performed in a substrate-encapsulated system, yielding canrenone [4] in 70% yield. Encapsulation of nitrile-metabolizing Rhodococcus rhodochrous cells using a polyamide membrane yielded leaky capsules, but biotransformation of 2-(4- chlorophenyl)-3-methylbutyronitrile (CPIN) [6] in a free cell system yielded CPIN amide [7] in 40% yield and 94% ee. A two-phase biotransformation of CPIN consisting of a 5:1 ratio of tris buffer, pH 7.2 to octane respectively, gave CPIN acid [8] in 30% yield and 97% ee. It was concluded that Rhodococcus rhodochrous ATCC 17895 contained a nonselective nitrile hydratase and a highly selective amidase enzyme.