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Scientist with Test Tubes



Merging transition-metal and organocatalysis for selective synthesis

Asymmetric catalysis

A pillar of our research is the combination of organocatalysis and transition-metal catalysis to develop new stereoselective  methods and pioneer novel concepts. Bioactive compounds, hetero- and carbocycles are among our synthetic targets, given their relevance to  the pharmaceutical and agrochemical industry.  We aim to develop user-friendly methods to assemble complex enantioenriched molecules  from minimally functionalised feedstock substrates.

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Ligand design

We rationally design bifunctional ligands for late transition-metals incorporating anchors that can establish non-covalent interactions with other reaction components. By exploiting ion-pairing and H-bonding effects, we aim to steer the regio-, diastereo- and enantioselectivity of reactions for the synthesis of medicinally relevant scaffolds. 

Mechanistic studies

We investigate our catalytic systems experimentally by carrying out kinetic analysis and applying modern physical organic chemistry tools. Spectroscopic studies further allow us to probe the non-covalent  interactions in our supramolecular systems. Mechanistic understanding in turn informs the synthesis of more efficient and selective catalysts, and the design of novel transformations. 

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