forme_membres_ICBMS Prof Pierre Strazewski

Prof Pierre Strazewski


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Peter Strazewski (, called Peter in German and English, Pierre in French and Piotr (Strążewski) in Polish, British born 1958 from Polish parents, has also Swiss and Polish citizenships, was educated and habilitated in chemistry in Basel, Switzerland, is full Professor in Lyon since 2001 and the Principal Investigator of the research group SYSCHEM (Systems Chemistry of Biomolecules and Prebiotic Chemistry) that has focused for the last decade on the stepwise construction of complex chemical biomolecular systems that may lead to primitive synthetic cells without providing enzymes or ribozymes.

Traditionally, his speciality since the 1990-ies is the synthesis of nucleosides and oligonucleotides connected with amino acids (as in puromycin or its structural analogues) or with oligopeptides, a research motivated by the exploration of molecular core components of RNA-driven peptide synthesis needed for the evolution of ribosomal translation, see the report on the synthesis on solid support of amphiphilic peptidyl-RNA, their circular dichroism, thermal denaturation and visualisation by atom force microscopy at (publication no. 35 in the list below).  In 2005 he started to work on the anchoring of such peptide-RNA conjugates onto phospholipidic giant vesicles being primitive models of cellular compartments.  His close and permanent collaborator Michele Fiore has deepened the knowledge of producing and evolving giant vesicles composed of mixtures of lipids.


Strazewski's research in the last period of his experimental scientific activity aims at finding sets of experimentally feasible initial conditions, viz. exploring varied compositions and analysing their outcomes, of a fully synthetic chemical microcompartmented and evolvable macro-molecular system being fed with monomers and small molecular weight-high energy compounds, to keep the system permanently out of thermodynamic equilibrium and let it selfevolve, thus, expecting to gain: 1) importexport control of macromolecules across the compartment membranes; 2) fuel- and food-dependent increase in macromolecular size and variety, that is, in polymer length and composition, inside the compartments; 3) sustained production of particularly useful macromolecules through the establishment of a (or several) de novo genetic code(s) leading to 4) the emergence of replicating macromolecular populations and, ultimately, 5) the emergence of selfevolved living cells ex inanimo.

Listen to a reasonably recent lecture about this research at


Several sub-topics are being developed. One is the synthesis of phospholipids and similar membranogenic amphiphiles, either through directed conventional or through plausibly prebiotic pathways, in order to observe and follow the dynamic formation and regeneration of vesicles upon their slow hydration and periodic feeding with added amphiphiles.

Another sub-topic is the growth of moderately lipophilic peptides from amino acids or shorter peptides. Such peptide chain growth is possible through attaching the first monomer to a monomeric nucleotide or short nucleic acid. Under chemical activation conditions, nucleic acids may grow in size and variety as well. The gain from growing both kinds of macromolecules within growing, dividing and evolving vesicles constitutes the highest level of complexity expected to be achieved by chemical systems.

Complex chemical mixtures are difficult to analyse, therefore the synthesis of useful new fluorophores, as well as macromolecular reference compounds prepared on synthesizers, both of help to follow the dynamic changes in chemical systems by fluorescence microscopy, flow cytometry, heteronuclear NMR spectroscopy and (U)HPLC coupled to mass spectrometry, are permanently accompanying this research.  Peter Strazewski loves to use stable isotopes for the discovery of reaction pathways and mechanisms.


Considerable funding was provided by the European Union Framework Programme and the Volkswagen Foundation. The Agence Nationale de la Recherche has refused funding.


List of publications before 2014

(57) Krishnakumar, K. S.; Michel, B. Y.; Nguyen-Trung, N. Q.; Fenet, B.; Strazewski, P. Intrinsic pKa values of 3'-N-α-L-aminoacyl-3'-aminodeoxyadenosines determined by pH dependent 1H NMR in H2O. Chem. Commun. 201147, 3290-3292. DOI:10.1039/c0cc05136e

(56) Krishnakumar, K. S.; Goudedranche, S.; Bouchu, D.; Strazewski, P. The shortest synthetic route to puromycin analogs using a modified Robins approach.
J. Org. Chem. 201176, 2253-2256.

(55) Johansson, M.; Ieong, K.-W.; Trobro, S.; Strazewski, P.; Åqvist, J.; Pavlov, M. Y.; Ehrenberg, M.
pH-Sensitivity of the ribosomal peptidyl transfer reaction dependent on the identity of the A-site aminoacyl-tRNA.
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 2011108, 79-84.
Open Access Article DOI:10.1073/pnas.1012612107

(54) Strazewski, P.
The relationship between difference and ratio and a proposal: equivalence of temperature and time, and the first spontaneous symmetry breaking. J. Syst. Chem. 20101, 11.
Open Access Article DOI:10.1186/1759-2208-1-11

(53) Zimak, P.; Terenzi, S.; Strazewski, P.
New concept for quantification of similarity relates entropy and energy of objects: First and Second Law entangled, group behavior of micro black holes expected. J. Syst. Chem. 2010,1, 2. Open Access Article DOI:10.1186/1759-2208-1-2

(52) Krishnakumar, K. S.; Strazewski, P. Synthesis of a deoxyxylopuromycin analogue. Synlett 2010, 1055-1058.

(51) Michel, B. Y.; Strazewski, P. Total Syntheses of a Conformationally locked North-type methanocarba puromycin analogue and a dinucleotide derivative. Chem.–Eur. J. 200915, 6244-6257. DOI:10.1002/chem.200802629

(50) Strazewski, P.  Adding to Hans Kuhn's thesis on the emergence of the genetic apparatus: Of the Darwinian advantage to be neither too soluble, nor too insoluble, neither too solid, nor completely liquid. Colloids Surf. 200974, 419-425. DOI:10.1016/j.colsurfb.2009.07.001

(49) Lamy, C.; Lemoine, J.; Bouchu, D.; Goekjian, P.; Strazewski, P. Glutamate-glycine and histidine-glycine co-oligopeptides: batch co-oligomerization versus pulsed addition of N-carboxyanhydrides. ChemBioChem 20089, 710-713.

(48) Saneyoshi, H.; Michel, B. Y.; Choi, Y.; Strazewski, P.; Marquez, V. E. Synthesis of conformationally locked versions of puromycin analogues. J. Org. Chem. 200873, 9435-9438.

(44) Michel, B. Y.; Krishnakumar, K. S.; Strazewski, P. Synthesis of a xylo-puromycin analogue. Synlett 2008, 2461-2464. DOI:10.1055/s-2008-1078025

(43) Charafeddine, A.; Dayoub, W.; Chapuis, H.; Strazewski, P. First synthesis of 2'-deoxyfluoropuromycin analogues: experimental insight into the mechanism of the Staudinger reaction. Chem. Eur. J. 200713, 5566-5584.

(42) Charafeddine, A.; Chapuis, H.; Strazewski, P.
Facile and rapid access to inosine puromycin analogs through the use of adenylate deaminase.
Org. Lett. 20079, 2787-2790. DOI:10.1021/ol070818q

(41) Strazewski, P. Question 6: How did translation occur? Orig. Life Evol. Biosph. 200737, 399-401.

(40) Michel, B. Y.; Strazewski, P.
Synthesis of (–)-neplanocin A with the highest overall yield via an efficient Mitsunobu coupling. Tetrahedron 200763, 9836-9841. DOI:10.1016/j.tet.2007.06.100

(39) Lazar, A. N.; Coleman, A. W.; Terenzi, S.; Strazewski, P. Observation of the formation of supported bilayers by amphiphilic peptidyl-RNA. Chem. Commun. 2006, 63-65.

(38) Chapuis, H.; Strazewski, P. Shorter puromycin analog synthesis by means of an efficient Staudinger-Vilarrasa coupling.Tetrahedron 200662, 12108-12115.

(37) Strazewski, P. A propos "Channeling the future"
Chemical & Engineering News2004, 82(9), 4.
Open Access Document

(36) Nguyen-Trung, N. Q.; Terenzi, S.; Scherer, G.; Strazewski, P. High-yield immobilization of a puromycin analogue for the solid support synthesis of aminoacyl-tRNA fragments. Org. Lett. 20035, 2603-2606. DOI:10.1021/ol0346638

(35) Terenzi, S.; Biała, E.; Nguyen-Trung, N. Q.; Strazewski, P. Amphiphilic 3'-peptidyl-RNA conjugates.
Angew. Chem., Int. Ed. 200342, 2909-2912.
DOI:10.1002/anie.200350926Angew. Chem. 2003115, 3015–3018. DOI:10.1002/ange.200350926 

(34) Nguyen-Trung, N. Q.; Botta, O.; Terenzi, S.; Strazewski, P. A practical route to 3'-amino-3'-deoxyadenosine derivatives and puromycin analogues.J. Org. Chem. 200368, 2038-2041.

(33) Choi, Y.; George, C.; Strazewski, P.; Marquez, V. E.
Synthesis of a conformationally locked version of puromycin amino nucleoside. Org. Lett. 20024, 589-592.

(32) Strazewski, P. Thermodynamic correlation analysis: hydration and perturbation sensitivity of RNA secondary structures. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2002124, 3546-3554.

(31) Biała, E.; Strazewski, P.
Internally mismatched RNA: pH and solvent dependence of the thermal unfolding of tRNAAla acceptor stem microhairpins. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2002124, 3540-3545.

(30) Trung, N. Q. N.; Strazewski, P.; Olsson, M.; Ehrenberg, M. The conformational space of nascent peptide-accepting 3'-aminoacyl ribonucleos(t)ides: 1H NMR data and ab initio calculations of puromycin and some synthetic analogs. Nucleosides, Nucleotides & Nucleic Acids 200120, 383-384.
Symposium Abstract DOI:10.1081/NCN-100002310

(29) Strazewski, P. W obronie chemii. Nauka 20001, 109-125 (Quarterly journal of the Polish Academy of Sciences, PAN)

(28) Moyroud, E.; Biała, E.; Strazewski, P. Synthesis and enzymatic digestion of an RNA nonamer in both enantiomeric forms. Tetrahedron 200056, 1475-1484.

(26) Strazewski, P.; Biała, E.; Gabriel, K.; McClain, W. H.
The relationship of thermodynamic stability at a G·U recognition site to tRNA aminoacylation specificity.
RNA 19995, 1490-1494. Open Access Article

(22) Moyroud, E.; Botta, O.; Strazewski, P.
L-Ribonucleosides for racemic RNA.
Nucleosides & Nucleotides 199918, 693-695.
Symposium Abstract DOI:10.1080/15257779908041544

(21) Moyroud, E.; Strazewski, P. L-Ribonucleosides from L-xylose. Tetrahedron 199955, 1277-1284.

(20) Gunzenhauser, S.; Biała, E.; Strazewski, P.
Tetraethylene glycol-derived spacer for oligonucleotide synthesis. Tetrahedron Lett. 199839, 6277-6280.

(19) Botta, O.; Moyroud, E.; Lobato, C.; Strazewski, P.
Synthesis of 3'-azido- and 3'-amino-3'-deoxyadenosine in both enantiomeric forms. Tetrahedron 199854, 13529-13546.

(18) Strazewski, P. Braucht es ein Plädoyer für Chemie?
Chimia 199751, 69-75. Download from

(17) Amantea, A.; Henz, M.; Strazewski, P. Synthesis of (15N2)[17O]urea, (15N2)[O2,O4-17O2]uridine, and (15N3)[O2-17O]cytidine. Helv. Chim. Acta 199679, 244-54.

(16) Strazewski, P. Calculating the thermodynamics of weakly hydrogen-bonded complexes from heteronuclear NMR data: Base-pairing stabilities of a 5-methyl(15N2)[O2,O4-17O2]uridine (= (15N2)[O2,O4-17O2]ribosylthymine) derivative and structural implications. Helv. Chim. Acta 199578, 1112-43.

(15) Amantea, A.; Walser, M.; Sequin, U.; Strazewski, P.
Synthesis and 15N and 17O NMR spectra of 5-methyl(15N2)[O2,O4-17O2]uridine (=(15N2)[O2,O4-17O2]ribosylthymine).
Helv. Chim. Acta 199578, 1106-11.

(14) Niemann, A. C.; Meyer, M.; Engeloch, T.; Botta, O.; Hädener, A.; Strazewski, P. Biosynthesis production of [N2,1,3,7,9-15N5]guanosine and [1,3,7,9-15N4]inosine and conversion into [N6,1,3,7,9-15N5]adenosine for structure elucidation of RNA by heteronuclear NMR. Helv. Chim. Acta 199578, 421-39. DOI:10.1002/hlca.19950780213

(13) Cruse, W. B. T.; Saludjian, P.; Biala, E.; Strazewski, P.; Prange, T.; Kennard, O. Structure of a mispaired RNA double helix at 1.6-Å resolution and implications for the prediction of RNA secondary structure. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 199491, 4160-4. Open Access Article PubMed ID 7514296

(12) Stolz, F.; Strazewski, P.; Tamm, C.; Neuburger, M.; Zehnder, M. New chiral α-benzyloxyacryliron(II) complex for asymmetric synthesis of α,α-dialkyl-α-hydroxycarbonyl compounds. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. Engl. 199231, 193-195.
DOI:10.1002/anie.199201931 Neuer chiraler α-Benzyloxyacryl-Eisen(II)-Komplex zur asymmetrischen Synthese von α,α-Dialkyl-α-hydroxycarbonylverbindungen. Angew. Chem. 1992104, 225–227. DOI:10.1002/ange.19921040233 

(11) Eschenhof, H.; Strazewski, P.; Tamm, C.
A new synthesis of 3-deazathymidine and of a related phosphoramidite synthon. Tetrahedron 199248, 6225-30.

(10) Kienzler, T.; Strazewski, P.; Tamm, C.
A new synthesis of coprine and O-ethylcoprine.
Helv. Chim. Acta 199275, 1078-84.

(9) Strazewski, P. Psoralen mutagenesis by transient misalignment? J. Theor. Biol. 1991151, 429-31.
Open Access Article DOI:10.1016/S0022-5193(05)80390-X

(8) Kienzler, T.; Strazewski, P.; Tamm, C. Synthesis of 1-aminocyclopropanol by anodic oxidation. Synlett 1991, 737-8.
Open Access Article DOI:10.1055/s-1991-34757

(7) Strazewski, P.; Tamm, C. Replication experiments with nucleotide base analogs. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 199029, 36-57. DOI:10.1002/anie.199000361
Replikationsexperimente mit Nukleotidbasen-Analoga.
Angew. Chem. 1990102, 37-59. DOI:10.1002/ange.19901020106

(6) Strazewski, P. The biological equilibrium of base pairs.       J. Mol. Evol. 199030, 116-24. DOI:10.1007/BF02099938

(5) Strazewski, P. Mispair formation in DNA can involve rare tautomeric forms in the template. Nucleic Acids Res. 1988,  16, 9377-98. Open Access Article DOI:10.1093/nar/16.20.9377 

(4) Strazewski, P. Nucleosides and nucleotides: Part 28 [1]. Carbon-13 NMR spectra of 2'-deoxycytidine and 3-deaza-2'-deoxycytidine. Nucleic Acids Res. 198816, 5191.
Open Access Article DOI:10.1093/nar/16.11.5191

(3) Strazewski, P.; Tamm, C. A simple synthesis of 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid. Synthesis 1987, 298-9.
Open Access Article DOI:10.1055/s-1987-27925

(2) Strazewski, P.; Tamm, C. Insight into the behavior of a lithium enolate in solution. Helv. Chim. Acta 198669, 1041-51.

(1) Schmidlin, T.; Gamboni, R.; Strazewski, P.; Tamm, C.
Approaches to the synthesis of cytochalasans. Part 5. Studies on the selectivity of the Diels-Alder reaction. Helv. Chim. Acta 1983

Publications Retrouvez les dernières contributions

Synthetic outer membrane vesicles bearing Tn antigen

Carolina Chieffo, Arnaud Comte, Peter Strazewski and Michele Fiore*

European Journal of Organic Chemistry 2023

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Microwave-assisted syntheses of rhodamine, rhodol, and fluorescein derivatives

Carolina Chieffo, Emiliano Altamura, Guillaume Pilet, Saïda Mebarek, Peter Strazewski and Michele Fiore*

ChemPlusChem 2023, 88, e202300189

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Tides over titanium

Peter Strazewski

Nature Synthesis, 2023, 2, 315-316

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A comprehensive characterization of “off/on” rhodol-based lysosomal tracker for orthogonal cellular analysis by confocal imaging

Carolina Chieffo, Emiliano Altamura, Layth Ben Trad, Guillaume Pilet, Ofelia Maniti, Thierry Granjon, Saïda Mebarek, Peter Strazewski, Michele Fiore*

ChemBioChem 2023, 24, e202200513

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Chemical analysis of lipid boundaries after consecutive growth and division of supported giant vesicles

Augustin Lopez, Dimitri Fayolle, Michele Fiore,* Peter Strazewski

iScience 2020, 23, 101677

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