Biosynthesis of natural products containing β-amino acids
Covering: up to January, 2014
We focus here on β-amino acids as components of complex natural products because the presence of β-amino acids produces structural diversity in natural products and provides characteristic architectures beyond those of ordinary α-L-amino acids, thus generating significant and unique biological functions in nature. In this review, we first survey the known bioactive β-amino acid-containing natural products including nonribosomal peptides, macrolactam polyketides, and nucleoside–β-amino acid hybrids. Next, the biosynthetic enzymes that form β-amino acids from α-amino acids and the de novo synthesis of β-amino acids are summarized. Then, the mechanisms of β-amino acid incorporation into natural products are reviewed. Because it is anticipated that the rational swapping of the β-amino acid moieties with various side chains and stereochemistries by biosynthetic engineering should lead to the creation of novel architectures and bioactive compounds, the accumulation of knowledge regarding β-amino acid-containing natural product biosynthetic machinery could have a significant impact in this field. In addition, genome mining of characteristic β-amino acid biosynthetic genes and unique β-amino acid incorporation machinery could lead to the discovery of new β-amino acid-containing natural products.