Takudrei

047
Unusually stable magic number clusters of serine with a surprising preference for homochirality

C. A. Schalley, P. Weis— 2002

The amino acid serine forms unusually stable octameric clusters upon electrospray ionization of relatively concentrated solutions. A strong preference for homochiral clusters is observed, while mixed clusters of D- and L-serine are significantly underrepresented. The present essay reviews the experimental results as well as the structures suggested so far. Surprisingly, there is good agreement on the experimental facts among different research groups, but a vivid discussion with respect to the octamer structure is going on. In order to provide a firm basis for a discussion of these issues, we briefly address the questions of chiral recognition of amino acids and cluster formation in more general terms. Another important issue in this respect is the generation of zwitterionic amino acids in the gas phase. This paper suggests a new structure that seems to be in good agreement with the experimental evidence gathered so far. The review terminates with some thoughts on the implications of the homochirality of serine octamers for homochirogenesis and the origin of life.

Title047
Unusually stable magic number clusters of serine with a surprising preference for homochirality
AuthorC. A. Schalley, P. Weis
Date20021101
IdentifierDOI 10.1016/S1387-3806(02)00955-7
Source(s)
CitationInt. J. Mass Spectrom. 2002, 221, 9-19
TypeText