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Ohio State chemists synthesize possible new anti-tumor agent

o five smaller pieces. Over 11 years, the researchers performed essentially all possible series of chemical reactions these constituents could undergo, starting over whenever they reached a chemical dead end.

The researchers charted each chemical reaction like a composer would write a score for a symphony orchestra, Coleman said: "We had to write every note for every instrument, think about how the different instruments would play off each other."

To obtain natural azinomycin A for comparison, they fermented a broth of Streptomyces bacteria, which Coleman says resembles a good Irish ale, and isolated both of the azinomycins.

In February 2001, the researchers obtained the synthetic form of azinomycin A that perfectly matched the original. "For all intents and pur

poses, they are absolutely indistinguishable," Coleman said. Now the Ohio State researchers are investigating how azinomycin A and B form such strong bonds with DNA. They have also started tinkering with the synthetic formula.

"We think we're beginning to see why the natural form is unstable, and that gives us some idea of where to go next with building new anti-tumor agents," Coleman said.


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Contact: Robert Coleman
Coleman.184@osu.edu
614-292-4548
Ohio State University
1-May-2001


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