Hamna Shahnawaz

Advisor: Bill Malachowski

Department: Chemistry

Enantioselective Synthesis of Bicyclic Rings with Quaternary Centers via the Rauhut-Currier reaction

The formation of carbon-carbon bonds are crucial for the synthesis of biologically active molecules however the reactions that form these bonds have proven to be a challenge. Developing new methods to overcome this problem is the central focus of synthetic organic chemistry and the project I’m working on explores the formation of carbon-carbon bonds through the Rauhut-Currier reaction, specifically the a Birch Reduction-Alkylation reaction. The goal is to find an efficient method of synthesizing enantiomerically pure, stereoselective bicyclic ring systems with quaternary stereocenters, similar to those found in nature, that are biologically active. Crucial to the synthesis will be to test the chirality of the synthesized compound to discover its potential for stereoselective transformation and whether or not usage of different chiral catalysts allow more stereocontrol in the essential ring-forming step.