The Green Research Group works at the interface of Chemistry, Biology and Physics and thereby provides extensive training and collaborative opportunities for students in our program. Our group employs organic and inorganic synthetic methods along with spectroscopic/analytical techniques (electrochemistry, XRD, NMR, UV-Vis and others) to target current challenges in biomedicine and chemical industry. We collaboratively complement our projects with cellular biology, physical inorganic methods (EPR, advanced NMR, determination of binding constants, and computational methods), and studies carried out with animal models (murine to date). Our current research focus includes the development of small molecules that can target diseases that involve oxidative stress and/or metal-ion misregulation, such as Alzheimer’s. We are also working toward the development of responsive electrochemical biosensors for biomarkers associated with cancer and MRI contrast agents for diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer’s and others. Finally, we are also developing a new class of metal-based complexes that can be used to study and ultimately optimize C-C and C-H transformations in organic chemistry.
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In the current study, we sought to obtain a more detailed understanding of the iron-catalyzed C–C coupling process from four viewpoints: (1) the need for oxygen atoms was investigated by altering the reaction conditions to eliminate all sources of oxygen, including dioxygen, water, and oxy-containing counterions, (2) the role of oxygen was investigated by determining if 3-pyrroline-2-one could serve as a starting material in the production of 2-phenylpyrrole, (3) the potential for radical participation was tested by varying the radical-scavenging ability of the catalyst used, and (4) the role of μ-oxodiiron complexes under reaction conditions was further studied using absorbance spectroscopy.
The number of substituted pyridine pyridinophanes found in the literature is limited due to challenges associated with 12-membered macrocycle and modified pyridine synthesis. Most notably, the electrophilic character at the 4-position of pyridine in pyridinophanes presents a unique challenge for introducing electrophilic chemical groups. Here we report the synthetic methods used to produce four new pyridinophane macrocycles along with pKa and XRD results.