5 years ago

Silicon amino acids

Silicon amino acids
Marcin Czapla
The existence and gas phase stability of silicon analogues of three natural amino acids (i.e., silicon glycine, silicon alanine, and silicon valine) belonging to the novel class of compounds termed silicon amino acids (SiAA) are investigated theoretically on the basis of ab initio QCISD/aug-cc-pVTZ and MP2/aug-cc-pVTZ calculations. All molecules studied (in their gas phase canonical forms) are structurally comparable to their proteinogenic counterparts (i.e., glycine, l-alanine, and l-valine) and capable of forming several structural isomers as such. These higher energy isomers are characterized by small relative energies (not exceeding 4 kcal mol−1). The simulated IR spectra of the Si-Gly, Si-Ala, and Si-Val global minima are also presented and discussed. Natural amino acids are the fundamental building blocks of life, however, unnatural amino acids (such as silicon-containing amino acids) are growing in relevance. This work introduces a novel class of modified amino acids—SiAA—in which all carbon atoms are replaced by the silicon atoms. It is notable that these untypical systems are structurally comparable to their proteinogenic counterparts and can be useful as the basis of alternative biochemical structures.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1002/qua.25488

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