Our group deals with structural aspects of bioactive compounds and their mode of action. In most cases this involves investigating the interaction of small molecules with their biopolymeric receptors. We also continue to pursue isolation and characterization of natural products that are challenging because of their extremely limited quantity, instability, etc. Parallel with these studies, we place emphasis on developing new methods to facilitate structural studies, including biopolymers, as well as small molecules and new isolation methods.
A chemistry unit with two newly consstructed laboratories has recently started in Biosphere 2 in Arizona. The world in this huge glass-domed building with its rain forest, savannah, and ocean constitues an unprecedented "Nature" with no ultravioled light, and is bound to lead to new natural products chemistry.
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Isolation and Characterization of a Retinal Pigment Epithelial Cell Fluorophores: An All-trans-retinal Dimer Conjugate, N.E. Fishkin, J.R. Sparrow, R. Allikmets, K. Nakanishi, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci., 102, 7091-7096 (2005)
Anthocyanins protect against A2E Photooxidation and Membrane Permeabilization in Retinal Pigment Epithelian Cells, Y. P. Jang , J. Zhou, K. Nakanishi, J.R. Sparrow, Photochem. Photobiology, 81, 529-536 (2005)
A Cationic Zinc Porphyrin as a Chiroptical Probe for Z-DNA, M. Balaz, M. De Napoli, A. E. Holmes, A. Mammana, K. Nakanishi, N. Berova , R. Purrello, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., 41, 4006-4009 (2005)
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