As a chemistry group, we are determined in utilizing our skills to solve practical and important chemical and biological problems. To serve our mission, we turn our focuses on four different subareas: 1) catalysis; 2) carbon dioxide fixation; 3) design and synthesis of molecular photoswitches; 4) fight again tuberculosis (TB).
1) From the petroleum industry to drug discovery, catalysis has perpetrated many phases of our lives today. It has undoubtedly made a profound impact on how our society functions. What interests us in catalysis, is the creativity and diligence in enabling novel and efficient catalytic processes while targeting important chemical transformations. Specifically, we are interested in photoredox catalysis and transition-metal catalysis in addition to the discovery of new catalysis fields.
2) Inspired by nature's ability to fixate carbon dioxide, we are interested in utilizing transition metal catalysis and photoredox catalysis to engage carbon dioxide in carbon-carbon bond forming reactions. In this area, we hope to design novel catalyst structures and control their reactivity to effectively capture carbon dioxide in divergent reaction settings.
3) Tuberculosis remains a major health concern for our society today. This project is in collaboration with Prof. Donald R. Ronning's group for the synthesis of small molecule targets to treat resistant strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis (M.tb). To read more about his work on combating against TB, see here.
4) Molecular Photoswitches - This is a collaborational project with Prof. Ajith Karunarathne's group in the design and synthesis of novel molecular photoswitches to study GPCR signaling pathways. In addition, we are also extremely interested in generating photoswitches that can undergo effecient switching using Visible light. To read more about Prof. Karunarathne's work, see here.