A Bistable Switch in Dynamic Thiodepsipeptide Folding and Template-Directed Ligation

Rakesh Mukherjee, Rivka Cohen-Luria, Nathaniel Wagner, Gonen Ashkenasy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Bistable reaction networks provide living cells with chemically controlled mechanisms for long-term memory storage. Such networks are also often switchable and can be flipped from one state to the other. We target here a major challenge in systems chemistry research, namely developing synthetic, non-enzymatic, networks that mimic such a complex function. Therefore, we describe a dynamic network that depending on initial thiodepsipeptide concentrations leads to one of two distinct steady states. This bistable system is readily switched by applying the appropriate stimuli. The relationship between the reaction network topology and its capacity to invoke bistability is then analyzed by control experiments and theory. We suggest that demonstrating bistable behavior using synthetic networks further highlights their possible role in early evolution, and may shine light on potential utility for novel applications, such as chemical memories.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)12452-12456
Number of pages5
JournalAngewandte Chemie - International Edition
Issue number42
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2015


  • bistability
  • depsipeptides
  • reaction networks
  • systems chemistry

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • Catalysis


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