The Treibs hypothesis: An evaluation based on structural studies
The Treibs hypothesis: An evaluation based on structural studies The Treibs hypothesis linking sedimentary 13,15-ethanoporphyrins to an origin from chlorophylls requires the natural occurrence of a suite of intermediates on the proposed degradative pathway. The hypothesis was suggested over 50 years ago, yet despite the now extensive literature on the structural characterization of sedimentary porphyrins, few of the putative intermediates have been isolated and identified. Through examination of the tetrapyrrole distributions of three selected sediments, the authors have now assigned the minimum number of intermediates necessary for the operation of a pathway of defunctionalization, linking a precursor such as chlorophyll a to a sedimentary porphyrin with the same carbon skeleton (deoxophylloerythroetioporphyrin). This provides further structural evidence for the defunctionalization of chlorophylls to give sedimentary 13,15-ethanoporphyrins.
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