A comparative study on asymmetric reduction of ketones using the growing and resting cells of marine-derived fungi
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Whole-cell biocatalysts offer a highly enantioselective, minimally polluting route to optically active alcohols. Currently, most of the whole-cell catalytic performance involves resting cells rather than growing cell biotransformation, which is one-step process that benefits from the simultaneous growth and biotransformation, eliminating the need for catalysts preparation. In this paper, asymmetric reduction of 14 aromatic ketones to the corresponding enantiomerically pure alcohols was successfully conducted using the growing and resting cells of marine-derived fungi under optimized conditions. Good yields and excellent enantioselectivities were achieved with both methods. Although substrate inhibition might be a limiting factor for growing cell biotransformation, the selected strain can still completely convert 10-mM substrates into the desired products. The resting cell biotransformation showed a capacity to be recycled nine times without a significant decrease in the activity. This is the first study to perform asymmetric reduction of ketones by one-step growing cell biotransformation.