The organic and medicinal chemistry cluster at CMB comprises the following research constellations:
The organic and organometallic chemistry constellation is particularly well known for its work on reaction mechanisms, asymmetric synthesis, structure and bonding, and advanced applications of NMR spectroscopy and computational chemistry combined with experiments on homogeneous catalysis. Particularly appreciated is the work on new methods in organic synthesis, especially samarium and lithium chemistry. Another direction is to investigate halogen bonding formed in solution environment employing novel, exceedingly accurate NMR methodologies, which is the particular focus of the halogen bonding group. Using a combination of spectroscopic and computational techniques, their energetics, geometry as well as relevance in inter- and intramolecular interactions are being elucidated.
Medicinal chemistry is primarily a chemistry-based discipline that involves aspects of the biological, medical and pharmaceutical sciences. The design, synthesis and evaluation of biologically active compounds are the main activities of a medicinal chemist. It also involves studies of the metabolism of such compounds and the interpretation of their mode of action on a molecular level and the evaluation of structure-activity relationships.
The dermatochemistry and biomedical photonics constellation focuses on a molecular level understanding of skin exposure, skin penetration, and interactions in the skin caused by microorganisms, chemicals and UV radiation. The skin is the principal barrier between self- and non-self but sometimes the skin fails to protect and that can result in skin cancer or contact allergy with its clinical manifestation allergic contact dermatitis. The molecular events resulting from exposure of the skin to chemicals are poorly understood, which also impairs the development of transdermal drug delivery systems. The research is focused on the interactions between organic molecules and macromolecules in the skin using cutting edge technology, e.g. advanced optical microscopy techniques. Apparently harmless compounds can cause damage and we are investigating the activation that occurs through air exposure or through metabolism in the skin. Several of the researchers in the organic and medicinal chemistry cluster are involved in the research centre, Centre for Skin Research – SkinResQU.