Queen’s University, Ph.D. Studentship in Organic and Organometallic Chemistry

Professor Evans's research group is engaged in a wide range of areas in synthetic organic chemistry, i.e. asymmetric catalysis, metal-catalyzed reactions, medicinal chemistry, synthetic methodology and total synthesis of complex biologically important natural products

.  Students can expect to be exposed to many of these exciting and pertinent areas of research during their Ph.D. studies.  For further information about the Evans Group and their research, please visit their web site.

  • Travel expenses to Kingston for relocation paid
  • Salary of $17,500 (CAD)


The Evans research group is engaged in the exploration and development of reactive intermediates for the expeditious synthesis of complex biologically important natural products. Specifically, we are interested in the development of diastereoselective radical cyclizations, temporary silicon-tethered ring-closing metathesis, and a variety of new asymmetric transition metal-catalyzed cross-coupling and carbocyclization reactions.

The first area of investigation is currently focused on the application of free radical cyclization reactions to the total synthesis of complex biologically important polycyclic guanidine-containing alkaloids. The batzelladines are a growing family of novel and highly complex polyguanidinium alkaloids that were isolated from a Caribbean sponge, in which batzelladine A is particularly pertinent because it competitively inhibits the binding of the HIV envelope protein gp-120 to the human CD4 receptor.

Organic and Organometallic Chemistry Research at Queen's University, Canada

Other methodology being developed in the Evans group includes the novel temporary silicon-tethered homo- and cross-coupling ring-closing metathesis reactions of allylic and homo-allylic alcohols. The cross-coupling strategy was recently utilized in a highly convergent total synthesis of the potent antitumor agent mucocin. We have also combined this chemistry with bismuth-mediated reductive etherification reactions for the construction of fused polycyclic ethers applicable to the synthesis of potent antifungal agents–gamberic acids.

We are also interested in transition-metal-catalyzed cross-coupling and carbocyclization reactions. In the course of these studies, we were intrigued by the problem of controlling regiochemistry in allylic systems. This stimulated the development of the regio- and enantiospecific rhodium-catalyzed allylic substitution reaction, with a variety of stabilized carbon and heteroatom nucleophiles. More recently we have focused on combining these cross-coupling reactions with metal-mediated carbocyclization reactions. This has led to the development of the transition metal-catalyzed [4+2+2] and [2+2+2] reactions, which provides a novel entry into eight- and six-membered rings. Additional studies will now focus on the development of this new and exciting carbocyclization reaction.

How to Apply

Click here to begin your application for graduate studies online. Students with any questions regarding application procedures can contact Annette Keyes, our Graduate Program Assistant.

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