Ruthenium Vinyl Carbene Reactivity
Diver, Steven Principal Investigator
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The Chemical Catalysis Program supports Professors Steven T. Diver and Jerome B. Keister at the State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo who have proposed a research program that will focus on studying enyne metathesis, which offers a direct catalytic synthesis of 1,3-dienes from simple unsaturated reactants. There is a substantial lack of information concerning the mechanism of the reaction and the structural parameters in the alkyne and alkene substrates affecting the outcome of the process. The proposal is focused on understanding the intimate steps of the catalytic cycle and the role of each reagent in influencing the reaction rate. The study is intended to be systematic and carried out under a variety of conditions. The study is based on chemical kinetics that will be performed using in-situ Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FT-IR), thus allowing the continuous monitoring of the reaction. Special attention will be given to the functional group tolerance in the substrates, a point that is not well understood due to the lack of a systematic study of this reaction. Understanding this reaction and the development of more practical enyne metathesis may lead to industrial applications especially in fine chemical synthesis in the pharmaceutical industry. With the support of the Chemical Catalysis Program in the Chemistry Division at the National Science Foundation, Dr. Steven T. Diver and Jerome B. Keister will perform detailed mechanistic studies that are likely to shed light on fundamental pathways that could lead to the design of more robust and efficient catalysts. A better understanding of enyne metathesis could provide reagents for chemical biology that may help in the study of human diseases and lead to new drugs and more cost effective syntheses. This contribution to the lower the cost of pharmaceuticals could help alleviate the high cost of healthcare on the US economy. The research will involve students at all levels and provide a collaborative learning environment. The PIs will continue to involve high school students, females and persons from underrepresented groups in their research.