Personal profile

Research interests

We are a catalysis and synthesis group with particular interest in the following areas:

1. Gold Catalysis
In the past decade, gold has emerged as a powerful catalyst for the electrophilic activation of carbon-carbon p bonds. Gold catalysis represents a new frontier in catalysis with scope for further discoveries and development, particularly in the field of asymmetric gold catalysis. We are interested in the development of novel gold catalysed reactions with the aim of expanding the current toolkit of synthetic techniques. Recent highlights from our group include developing novel gold-catalysed reactions with cyclopropenes and allenes.

For representative publications, see: Org. Lett., 2012, 14, 898. Abstract; Chem. Commun.,2011, 47, 1333 - 1335. Abstract; Org. Biomol. Chem., 2010, 8, 4090 - 4095. Abstract; Org. Lett.2010, 12, 484-487. Abstract; Chem. Commun., 2008, 6405-6407. Abstract

2. Palladium Catalysis
We have recently developed a mild and ligand free cationic Pd(II) system for conjugate additions to hindered ?-substituted cyclohexenones. Current work in the group centres around the development and futher applications of the cationic Pd(II) system.

For representative publications: Org. Lett., 2012, ASAP, DOI:10.1021/ol300794a. Abstract

3. N-Heterocyclic Carbene (NHC) - Type Ligands for Catalysis
The chemistry of N-heterocyclic carbenes (NHCs) and in particular their application as ligands, has developed rapidly since the synthesis of the first isolable species in 1991. NHC ligands are active in various transition metal catalysed reactions as well as in organocatalytic reactions. This area holds great promise in terms of the design of novel and modular ligands with different stereochemical topography.

For representative publication, see: Chem. Commun., 2011, 47, 328 - 330. Abstract and review: Aust. J. Chem. 2011, 64, 1118–1132. Abstract

4. Chiral rotaxanes
One of the most interesting and yet least exploited features of rotaxanes is chirality - a rotaxane consisting of an asymmetric rotor and asymmetric axis can have cyclochirality, even if both the rotor and axis are themselves achiral. To date, there are no efficient methods for the catalytic enantioselective synthesis of cyclochiral rotaxanes. We are interested in tackling this challenging problem using tools from the field of asymmetric catalysis.

Research Group Contact Details

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Research Output 2008 2017

Dual Gold and Photoredox Catalysed C-H Activation of Arenes for Aryl-Aryl Cross Couplings

Gauchot, V., Sutherland, D. & Lee, A-L. 1 Apr 2017 In : Chemical Science. 8, 4, p. 2885-2889 5 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Chemical activation

A rotaxane with the golden touch: A rotaxane with the golden touch

Lee, A-L. Jan 2016 In : Nature Chemistry. 8, 1, p. 8-9 2 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Chirality Transfer in Gold(I)-Catalysed Hydroalkoxylation of 1,3-Disubstituted Allenes

Webster, S., Sutherland, D. R. & Lee, A-L. 19 Dec 2016 In : Chemistry - A European Journal. 22, 51, p. 18593–18600 8 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Dual gold photoredox C(sp2)–C(sp2) cross couplings – development and mechanistic studies

Gauchot, V. & Lee, A-L. 25 Aug 2016 In : Chemical Communications. 52, 66, p. 10163-10166 4 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Enantioselective oxidative boron Heck reactions

Lee, A-L. 28 Jun 2016 In : Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry. 14, 24, p. 5357-5366 10 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature review


Activities 2013 2013

  • 1 Membership of peer review panel
  • 1 Other