Chemical Synthesis / Chemical Biology

Chemical Synthesis is an area of research in Chemistry that focuses on the development of new preparative/synthetic reaction methodologies for accessing molecules of interest. The methods used often employ a metal or organic catalyst to allow the reaction of interest to proceed. In the NICB we are interested in developing new routes to interesting molecules, with potential potent pharmacological activity. This often involves the synthesis of a library, or large collection, of lead compounds, designed around a specific scaffold, which are anticipated to have the desired biological activity. The library of compounds is then assayed for biological activity, e.g. for antibacterial activity. In chemical biology, we apply small to medium sized molecules produced through our synthetic methods, to the study and modulation of biological systems, e.g. the study of nucleoside analogues and antisense oligonucleotides in nucleic acid therapy for the modulation of protein production (and resulting treatment of disease).

Research Area