Catalyst Diversity from Chiral Palladacycles

Lead Research Organisation: University of East Anglia
Department Name: Chemistry


Catalytic methodologies have a very major impact on improving the efficiency and cost effectiveness of synthesis, a key (usually the key) technology for the development of new medicines, agrochemicals, materials, fragrances and, in turn, further catalysts. This programme will generate a platform for the discovery of chiral palladium catalysts for use in asymmetric synthesis based upon a new method of catalyst formation. This will allow numerous catalysts to be generated in just one step from palladium-based complexes, the synthesis of which has been pioneered within the Richards group. Access to a diverse array of palladium catalysts will enable the optimisation of selectivity and the minimisation of the quantity of catalyst required in a host of reactions. In addition, the new catalyst generation protocol will enable facile immobilisation, boosting further the sustainability of the chemistry through catalyst recovery and reuse. The new platform will be applied to the selective synthesis of novel and varied chiral (i.e. handed) structures, diversity generation lying at the heart of the process of discovering new bioactive compounds for application in drug discovery programmes.

Planned Impact

Beyond academia, beneficiaries will include the pharmaceutical industry, the agrochemical industry, and more specialist companies focused on the synthesis of fine chemicals and compound libraries. Novel catalysts may exploited for wealth creation through the discovery and manufacture of high value products. These include new medicines, and also related compounds that enable a full scientific understanding of a disease and its treatment. Other ways in which this work will directly benefit society by addressing global challenges is through potential application to the discovery and manufacture of new materials and agrochemicals, and through the specialist expertise to be garnered by the PDRA and PI. Interwoven with these societal benefits is the economic impact through the support of sectors of UK industry that are vital for employment and the UK balance of payments.


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