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J.W.T. Spinks Lecture Series

Nov 2, 2017 to Nov 3, 2017

M. Christine White

J.W.T. Spinks Lecture Series
by Prof. M. Christina White, Department of Chemistry, University of Illinois

Lecture 1: The Functionalization of C—H Bonds
Thursday, Nov. 2, 2017 
3:45 pm,
Arts 241 

Lecture 2: Molecular Surgery with Base-Metal Catalysts
Friday, Nov. 3, 2017
3:45 pm
Arts 241

Professor M. Christina White was born in Athens, Greece. She received a B.A. degree with highest honors in biochemistry from Smith College working with Stuart Rosenfeld in the area of host-guest chemistry. After a one-year stint in the biology graduate program working with Christian Anfinsen on thermophilic bacteria protein folding, she received her Ph. D. degree from Johns Hopkins University in chemistry with Gary Posner as an ACS Medicinal Chemistry Pre-Doctoral fellow. She was a NIH postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University with Eric Jacobsen from 1999-2002 and is currently a Professor of Chemistry at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. The White group aims to study and develop selective, catalytic C—H oxidation reactions for broad use in organic synthesis. They have contributed novel palladium/sulfoxide, iron PDP, and manganese phthalocyanine catalysts that are now commercially available (Aldrich, Strem, TCI). These catalysts are used academically and industrially to functionalize all types of C(sp3)—H bonds, including aliphatics, under preparative conditions with predictable and catalyst-controlled site-selectivities, even in complex molecule settings- without the requirement for directing groups. The reactions and quantitative models developed by the White group to understand and predict site-selectivities for aliphatic C—H hydroxylations have provided fundamental insights into the physical organic properties of C—H bonds that govern their differential reactivity in complex molecules and have led to strategic advances synthesis, most notably the concept of late-stage C—H functionalization. Professor White has given over 200 lectures worldwide.


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