Current projects in our
lab are multifarious in nature, and come under the following headings:
collaborative research program with Xerox Research Centre of Canada
has led to the development of organic materials for application as
photo-activated molecular switches.
These switches have the potential of becoming the basis for the
next generation of 3-D optical data devices that will replace existing
CD-ROM and silicon-based technologies.
Reading and writing of data in these systems is performed by
photochromic molecules where the reversible switching process is based
on photochemically induced interconversion between two states having
different absorption spectra.
A related project focuses on light
harvesting dendrimers and star polymers.
A related project focuses on light harvesting dendrimers and star polymers.
collaborative program with Prof. Gary vanLoon we are investigating the
mechanisms of abiotic degradation and soil/water interactions of
pesticides and other hydrophobic organic compounds.
A number of the pesticides such as fenitrothion (1),
are organo-phosphorus ester derivatives and their degradation (via
nucleophilic substitution at P) can be studied by UV/VIS spectro-photometric
techniques, leading to structure-activity relationships.
Herbicides such as trifluralin (2)
and benefin are electron-deficient nitroaromatic derivatives which
undergo degradation through SNAr mechanisms.
The dehalogenation of chlorinated hydrocarbons as mediated by
cyclodextrins is also investigated.
ions play vital roles in important biochemical processes involving
biomolecules such as proteins, enzymes, nucleic acids, etc.
In our research the binding of metal ions to heteroatomic
centres of biomolecules has been utilized as a probe of metal ion
effects in living systems. Isotopic hydrogen/deuterium/ tritium
exchange in imidazoles, histidines, thiazoles and purine derivatives,
is mediated by metal ions such as Pt(II), Co(III) and Cr(III).
The studies are also informative on the mechanism of drug
action, e.g. cis-platin analogues as anti-cancer agents.
C, Si, Ge.......
Cyclodextrin based enzyme models:
This project concerns the design of artificial catalytic enzyme model
systems based on cyclodextrin. It involves synthesis of modified
cyclodextrins as well as kinetic studies and molecular mechanics
calculations on potential cyclodextrin enzyme model systems.
Complexation by CD's of aromatics and halogenated hydrocarbons is also
investigated as part of remediation studies. Complexation work
by CD's is supple-