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Total Synthesis

The group has extensive interests in the total synthesis of bioactive natural products, exploiting catalysis in key transformations, and using cascade processes to form complex frameworks. Many of the molecules we target either feature, or use, unsaturated motifs (alkenes, alkynes, allenes) in their construction. Recent examples include two approaches to rubriflordilactone A, a member of the Schisandrafamily of natural products. We exploited a palladium-catalyzed cyclization of a bromoenediyne to form the 7,6,5-CDE ring natural product core, and also a cobalt-catalyzed alkyne cyclotrimerization approach, both routes converging on a late stage intermediate. 


Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., 2015, 54: 12618-12621

Collaborating with Prof Greg Challis (University of Warwick), we are interested in employing synthesis as a tool for validating the genomics-based approach to stereochemical assignments of polyketide natural products. In particular, we are focusing on the stambomycin family, discovered by Challis in 2011. Our recent completion of key fragments of stambomycin D has indeed shown that this emerging approach is promisingly accurate.

Stambomycin D.jpeg
Stambomycin graphs.jpeg

Org. Lett. 2021, 23, 19, 7439–7444

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