Hans Renata, PhD

Assistant Professor
Department of Chemistry
Florida Campus


Scripps Research Joint Appointments

Faculty, Graduate Program

Research Focus

Despite rapid advances in synthetic organic chemistry, many classes of small molecules remain inefficient to access using conventional methods. Enzymatic reactions, on the other hand, offer unparalleled potential for highly selective chemical transformations. By combining the power of directed evolution and advances in microbial genomics, the Renata laboratory aims to develop practical enzymatic solutions for traditionally challenging organic reactions, especially in the realm of C–H functionalization chemistry. The utility of these transformations will be showcased in the concise, scalable synthesis of bioactive natural products and their analogues. After successfully synthesizing these small molecules, we will take advantage of the state-of-the-art HTS operation at Scripps to rapidly assay their pharmacological profiles. Research projects are designed to be highly interdisciplinary, providing students with broad exposure to synthetic organic chemistry, molecular biology, and enzyme engineering to ensure that they are well-equipped for future careers in both academia and industry.


Ph.D. (Chemistry), Scripps Research, 2013
B.A. (Chemistry), Columbia University, 2008

Professional Experience

2013-2016 Postdoctoral Scholar, California Institute of Technology

Awards & Professional Activities

Selected References

All Publications

Zhang, R. J. K., Chen, K., Huang, X., Wohlschlager, L., Renata, H. & Arnold, F. H. Enzymatic assembly of carbon-carbon bonds via iron-catalysed sp(3) C-H functionalization. (2019). Nature, 565(7737), 67-72.

Zwick III, C. R. & Renata, H. A one-pot chemoenzymatic synthesis of (2S, 4R)-4-methylproline enables the first total synthesis of antiviral lipopeptide cavinafungin B. (2018). Tetrahedron, 74(45), 6469-6473.

King-Smith, E., Zwick III, C. R. & Renata, H. Applications of oxygenases in the chemoenzymatic total synthesis of complex natural products. (2018). Biochemistry, 57(4), 403-412.

Rudolf, J. D., Dong, L. B., Zhang, X., Renata, H. & Shen, B. Cytochrome P450-catalyzed hydroxylation initiating ether formation in platensimycin biosynthesis. (2018). Journal of the American Chemical Society, 140(39), 12349-12353.

Zwick III, C. R. & Renata, H. Evolution of biocatalytic and chemocatalytic C-H functionalization strategy in the synthesis of manzacidin C. (2018). Journal of Organic Chemistry, 83(14), 7407-7415.

Zwick III, C. R. & Renata, H. Remote C-H hydroxylation by an α-ketoglutarate-dependent dioxygenase enables efficient chemoenzymatic synthesis of manzacidin C and proline analogs. (2018). Journal of the American Chemical Society, 140(3), 1165-1169.

Zhang, X., King-Smith, E. & Renata, H. Total synthesis of tambromycin by combining chemocatalytic and biocatalytic C-H functionalization. (2018). Angewandte Chemie-International Edition, 57(18), 5037-5041.

Herwig, L., Rice, A. J., Bedbrook, C. N., Zhang, R. J. K., Lignell, A., Cahn, J. K. B., Renata, H., Dodani, S. C., Cho, I., Cai, L., Gradinaru, V., Arnold, F. H. Directed evolution of a bright near-infrared fluorescent rhodopsin using a synthetic chromophore. (2017). Cell Chemical Biology, 24(3), 415-425. PMCID: PMC5357175.

Hernandez, K. E., Renata, H., Lewis, R. D., Kan, S. B. J., Zhang, C., Forte, J., Rozzell, D., McIntosh, J. A. & Arnold, F. H. Highly stereoselective biocatalytic synthesis of key cyclopropane intermediate to ticagrelor. (2016). ACS Catalysis, 6(11), 7810-7813.

Renata, H., Lewis, R. D., Sweredoski, M. J., Moradian, A., Hess, S., Wang, Z. J. & Arnold, F. H. Identification of mechanism-based inactivation in P450-catalyzed cyclopropanation facilitates engineering of improved enzymes. (2016). Journal of the American Chemical Society, 138(38), 12527-12533. PMCID: PMC5042878.