The chemical modifications of proteins or protein complexes have been a challenging but fruitful
task in the post-genomic era. Bioorthogonal reactions play an important role for the purpose of selective functionalization,
localization, and labeling of proteins with natural or non-natural structures. Among these reactions,
reductive amination stands out as one of the typical bioorthogonal reactions with high efficiency, good
biocompatibility, and versatile applications. However, not many specific reviews exist to discuss the mechanism,
kinetics, and their applications in a detailed manner. In this manuscript, we aim to summarize some current
developments and mechanistic studies of reductive amination reaction and its applications. We hope reductive
amination reaction can contribute to a wider scope of protein chemistry research en route in the chemical
biology frontier as one of the well-known bioorthogonal reactions.
Keywords: Bioorthogonal reaction, reductive amination, reductive alkylation, protein labeling, protein chemistry.
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