AbstractIdentification of patterns in chemical reaction pathways aids in the effective design of molecules for specific applications. Here, we report on model reactions with a water-soluble single thiol-thioester exchange (TTE) reaction substrate, which was designed taking in view biological and medical applications. This substrate consists of the thio-depsipeptide, Ac-Pro-Leu-Gly-SLeu-Leu-Gly-NEtSH (TDP) and does not yield foul-smelling thiol exchange products when compared with aromatic thiol containing single TTE substrates. TDP generates an α,ω-dithiol crosslinker in situ in a ‘pseudo intramolecular’ TTE. Competitive intermolecular TTE of TDP with externally added “basic” thiols increased the crosslinker concentration whilst “acidic” thiols decreased its concentration. TDP could potentially enable in situ bioconjugation and crosslinking applications.