Complex molecule synthesis is one of the key disciplines of modern chemical research. The development of new methods for the synthesis and derivatization of such structures is a multi-dimensional activity involving reaction design, development and application. Research in our group focuses on each of these aspects of chemical synthesis. Utilizing the architecture and design principles presented by biologically relevant structures and processes, we seek to discover new reactions and to apply new principles to the selective synthesis of complex molecules.
As part of this program, we bring to bear the full arsenal of modern synthetic chemistry. Employing catalytic chemistry, we are working to discover a series of new chemical transformations that enable the rapid synthesis of stereochemically complex structures. In addition, we are investigating the development of new catalysts for the selective functionalization of these molecules. A key component of our effort is the determination of the fundamental molecular interactions which are responsible for reaction selectivities. As a result, a major focus of our research is an understanding of the inter- and intramolecular forces that allow selective chemical events to take place.