Research Interests

Research in my laboratory involves studies in chemistry, biology, and medicine. We are interested in the design and mechanism of action of molecules that exhibit unique biological activity and therapeutic potential and in developing fundamentally new ways of synthesizing such compounds. My group has introduced a number of new reactions and strategies for synthesis including arenealkene photocycloadditions and metal catalyzed [4+4], [4+2], [5+2], [6+2], [2+2+1], [4+2+1], [5+2+1], and [5+1+2+1] cycloadditions. Over 50 total syntheses of a wide range of complex targets have been achieved including taxol--a remarkable anti-cancer drug, phorbol --an agent that is central to understanding the molecular basis for tumor promotion and arcinogenesis, resiniferatoxin--a new lead for treating neuropathic pain, and bryostatin analogs--designed agents that have an exceptional range of anti-cancer activities. Another interest in my laboratory is directed at understanding biological barriers and in developing new molecular strategies that would enable or enhance the passage of molecules across these barriers. This work has resulted in new strategies for drug delivery and for molecular imaging based on molecular transporters, agents that can be attached to a poorly or non-penetrating biologically active molecule to enhance its uptake into cells and tissue.

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Primary Section

Section 14: Chemistry

Secondary Section

Section 21: Biochemistry