Monday, March 15, 2010

Seminar 3:15pm, March 25:

Jeff Johnson, Hope College
Carbon-Carbon Single Bond Activation: We can do what? To which bonds?

Jeff Johnson first experienced the wonders of pyrophoric inorganic species as an undergraduate at Gustavus Adolphus College. Following graduate studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison under the supervision of Chuck Casey, Jeff headed west for an NIH postdoctoral fellowship with Tomislav Rovis at Colorado State University. These experiences covered a breadth of inorganic and organic chemistry, including mechanistic analysis, the development of organic methodology and natural product synthesis.

Since 2007 Jeff has been an assistant professor of chemistry at Hope College in Holland, MI. His research focuses on the mechanistic elucidation of carbon-carbon bond activation reactions and the development of transition metal-catalyzed organic methodology.

Presentation Abstract: Carbon-carbon single bonds, being the fundamental structural component of organic compounds, are necessarily inert to a vast majority of typical reaction conditions. Despite the inherent stability of these bonds, several recently developed reactions have achieved carbon-carbon single bond activation and functionalization, but these reactions remain limited to very specific substrates. In order to learn more about the fundamental process of carbon-carbon bond activation, our group has initiated mechanistic studies on several of these reactions. This presentation will outline our approach to studying a rhodium-catalyzed reaction of quinolinyl ketones with alkenes and summarize our mechanistic conclusions to date.

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