Events in organic chemistry.

New Synthetic Tools for Peptide Medicinal Chemistry

Abstract: While the use of small organic molecules as therapeutic agents (drugs) goes back to antiquity, the therapeutic use of peptide drugs is a very recent phenomenon. Approximately 60 peptides have been introduced for clinical use in the past 25 years. 85% of these peptides contain at least one non-proteinogenic amino acid—those outside of the naturally encoded and translated amino acids—to confer metabolic stability, receptor potency and/or receptor selectivity to the peptide.

Reaching New Chemical Space with Excited States

In this talk I will provide several examples of photochemical reactions we used, or developed, to access a variety of structurally novel saturated heterocycles. Specifically, I will discuss our studies in the area of pyrrolinium photochemistry, the development of a Norrish-Yang reaction variant for accessing azetidines, and the photochemical decarbonylation of small heterocycles which give ylides (which react with pi systems).

A Radical Approach to Organic Chemistry

Synthetic chemists need ever better tools to synthesize the molecules of modern life, from life-changing pharmaceuticals to next generation materials. Further, there is increasing need for these transformations to be both step and atom efficient and sustainable, proceeding under mild conditions using earth abundant elements. Here we show how employing open shell intermediates strategically allows for challenging transformations to be achieved directly, from alkene difunctionalization to carboxylic acid deletion.

Methods to Evaluate and Perturb the Activity of the Human Proteasome with Small Molecules

Abstract: The degradation of proteins is an essential cellular process. The proteasome, a multi-catalytic enzyme, is mainly responsible for degrading proteins that are no longer required by the cell. My lab has focused on the development of activity probes that can monitor real-time proteasome activity biochemically and in live cells. These probes can be applied in variety of analytical methods including confocal microscopy, flow cytometry, and fluorescent plate readers.

Organic Synthesis Lecture: Catalyst-enabled molecular nanocarbon synthesis and nanocarbon biology

Abstract: Molecular nanocarbons including nanographenes and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons are among the most important classes of compounds, with potential applications in nearly all areas of science and technology. Typically, molecular nanocarbons are structurally simple assemblies of benzene-based hexagons and one can imaginarily build up a range of structures with ease and the theoretically possible number of molecular nanocarbon structures (planar and nonplanar) is extraordinary.

Pd0-catalyzed enantioselective C–H activation


In the past couple of decades, most of the research efforts of our group have been dedicated to the functionalization of non-activated C(sp3)–H and C(sp2)–H bonds using catalysis by palladium(0) complexes.1 In recent years, we have developed enantioselective versions of such reactions by employing different types of chiral catalysts (ancillary ligand,2 base3 or bifunctional system4), which enable the control of various stereogenic elements (center,5 axis,6 helix7).8 This lecture will present our latest results in this rapidly developing field.


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