A possible biological function of cyclic pseudo-octapeptides is presented. The dinuclear copper(II) complex of a synthetic analogue ([Cu2(H2Pat1)(μ-OH)(OH2)2]) of the naturally occurring ascidiacyclamide is known to have a hydroxo-bridged dicopper(II) site which is able to catalytically transform CO2 into CO32−. This complex is shown here to function as a phosphatase mimic, suggesting that the so far unknown biological function of these macrocycles within the ascidians may involve phosphoester hydrolysis.
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