Desaturation (O 2-dependent dehydrogenation) of long chain fatty acyl derivatives is a ubiquitous biotransformation which generates a wide variety of oxidized lipidic natural products with important biological properties. Recent advances in molecular/structural biology coupled with the application of novel mechanistic probes have led to a more sophisticated understanding of how fatty acid desaturases function. In this review, the major milestones along the pathway of desaturase research will be highlighted from a bioorganic perspective. 178 references are cited.

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Journal Natural Product Reports
Buist, P.H. (2004). Fatty acid desaturases: Selecting the dehydrogenation channel. Natural Product Reports (Vol. 21, pp. 249–262). doi:10.1039/b302094k