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Chiral complexes as catalysts for the preparation of optically pure synthons and bioactive molecules.

Edoardo Cesarotti, Isabella Rimoldi

The aim of this research project is the preparation and the characterization of chiral metal complexes with a configurationally stable chiral metal centre and the study of stereochemistry of the catalytic cycle elementary steps using as probe the metal stereochemistry. The chiral ligand, used in the synthesis of the complexes and in the study of their reactivity will be new chiral phosphinic and cyclopentadienyl ligands.  


Chiral Molecular materilas for photo/electroconversion.

Edoardo Cesarotti, Isabella Rimoldi, Elena Pini

This reasearch project is based on the synthesis, the characterization and the study of different properties of molecular materials as: mesomorphism,  nonlinear optics, electronic conduction also photoinduced, luminescence and photorefractivity. This research study deals with the preparation of salen derivatives connected by a chain long enough to ensure, upon coordination to a metal (palladium, iridium and zinc), a square planar trans disposition of the two salicilaldimmines (Shiff bases) or of a azo-derivatives with a monodentate Shiff base, for applications in photonics and optoelectronic fields.

The aim is to increase the separation of photogenerated charge and the conduction due to the HOMO and LUMO energy levels, involved in the process, which are physically separated from the metal centre and placed on different ligands.


Asymmetric synthesis of bioactive molecules and drug intermediates.

EdoardoCesarotti, Isabella Rimoldi, Raffaella Gandolfi

The primary object of this research program is the preparation of intermediates and chiral not racemic drugs by asymmetric catalysis in homogeneus phase and using biocatalysts (enzymes and whole cells). In particular natural and unnatural a- and b-amminoacids, hydroxy-acids and imines will be the target molecules.

Different approaches will be used for catalytic reactions: metal complexes with chiral ligands, especially atropoisomeric or stereogenic sp3 chiral phosphines and/or diamines and biocatalysts which are often complementary to metal catalysts in terms of enantio- and diastereoselectivity allowing to reduction prochiral molecules in soft reaction conditions.   


Metallo-enzymes synthesis

Raffaella Gandolfi, Isabella Rimoldi

The purpose of this research project is the synthesis of new catalysts based on transition metals where the second coordination sphere (that defines the stereoselectivity) is due to the presence of enzymes or proteins anchored to metal moiety through a suitable selected linker. The advantage of the use of these catalysts is their higher stability in aqueous medium making them versatile in a wide range of reactions.


Isolation and selection of new biocatalysts.

Raffaella Gandolfi

The aim of this research line is the isolation of new microrganisms from different habitat to select biocatalysts and their enzymatic activity using standard substrates and molecules appealing for pharmaceutical applications. In particular this project is focused on increasing the biocatalyst collection. The knowledge of the microorganisms enzymatic activity will allow to select the right catalyst depending on the type of reactions that need to be catalyzed and depending on electronic and steric properties of the substrates.


Synthesis of transition metal complexes with antineoplastic activity

Isabella Rimoldi, Edoardo Cesarotti

The object of this project is the synthesis of transition metal complexes with different functionalized diaminic ligands improving the hydrophilicity/lipophilicity ratio and the tolerability (pharmacokinetic profile) of these pre-drugs. In particular this research project will be focused on the development, the synthesis and the screening of new platinum compounds to improve the pharmacological strategy in the control of cells proliferation.      

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