Research Projects in HMLab

Students interested in joining the lab should go to this page.

Our research aims to develop new organic reactions and synthetic strategies for preparation of small organic molecules. The molecules we make are used as agrochemicals as well as probes that help us answer questions in molecular biology.

Currently we have two main research project underway

Gold catalysis

This project explores use of gold complexes as catalysts for a efficient addition of nucleophiles to the C–C pi bond in alkynes. Some of the questions that guide our efforts are:

Stable sulfenic acids

Though the chemistry of organic hydroperoxides (ROOH) is well understood, the properties of their sulfur analogs, sulfenic acids (RSOH), needs further investigation. Recent discoveries suggest that sulfenic acids efficiently terminate free radical chain oxidation (autoxidation) reactions. However, the small number of sulfenic acids that are stable in solution restricts the systematic study of their antioxidant properties. The long-term objective of this project is to determine what structural elements and functional groups render sulfenic acids stable in solution.