Eliminating Transition State Calculations for Faster and More Accurate Reactivity Prediction in Sulfa-Michael Additions Relevant to Human Health and the Environment

Piers Townsend, Elliot Farrar, Matthew Grayson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (SciVal)
45 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Fast and accurate computational approaches to predicting reactivity in sulfa-Michael additions are required for high-throughput screening in toxicology (e.g., predicting excess aquatic toxicity and skin sensitization), chemical synthesis, covalent drug design (e.g., targeting cysteine), and data set generation for machine learning. The kinetic glutathione chemoassay is a time-consuming in chemico method used to extract kinetic data in the form of log(kGSH) for organic electrophiles. In this work, we use density functional theory to compare the use of transition states (TSs) and enolate intermediate structures following C–S bond formation in the prediction of log(kGSH) for a diverse group of 1,4 Michael acceptors. Despite the widespread use of transition state calculations in the literature to predict sulfa-Michael reactivity, we observe that intermediate structures show much better performance for the prediction of log(kGSH), are faster to calculate, and easier to obtain than TSs. Furthermore, we show how linear combinations of atomic charges from the isolated Michael acceptors can further improve predictions, even when using inexpensive semiempirical quantum chemistry methods. Our models can be used widely in the chemical sciences (e.g., in the prediction of toxicity relevant to the environment and human health, synthesis planning, and the design of cysteine-targeting covalent inhibitors), and represent a low-cost, sustainable approach to reactivity assessment.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)26945–26951
Number of pages7
JournalACS OMEGA
Volume7
Issue number30
Early online date21 Jul 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Aug 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EP/L016354/1 for PAT and EP/R513155/1 for EHEF) and the University of Bath.

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering

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