Metabolic remodeling of bacterial surfaces via tetrazine ligations†
Bioorthogonal click ligations are extensively used for the introduction of functional groups in biological systems. Tetrazine ligations are attractive in that they are catalyst-free and display favorable kinetics. We describe the efficient remodeling of bacterial cell surfaces using unnatural D-amino acids derivatized with tetrazine ligation handles. The metabolic incorporation of these unnatural D-amino acids onto bacterial cell surfaces resulted in a site-selective installation of fluorophores.