2020 Sir Derek Barton Gold Medal Winner
Professor Barry Trost, Stanford University
Awarded for continued wide ranging contributions to the development of new synthetic methods employing transition metal catalysts, and the application of these methods to the efficient (atom economic), asymmetric synthesis of complex targets of biological interest.
At the heart of chemistry is the design of structure for function. Chemistry solves the problems of society, ranging from basic human needs like food, clothing, and healthcare to high tech electronic materials by making the designed structure available regardless of the structural complexity through chemical synthesis. Thus, a critical challenge requires an enhancement in the efficiency (step economy) and selectivity (atom economy) of the available synthetic methodology or toolbox.
The long-term goal and defining mission of Professor Trost’s career has been toward enhancing synthetic effectiveness. He has virtually created whole new methodologies and strategies in organic synthesis. Among the areas which he has pioneered are the use of sulphur-based reagents and transition metal, most notably palladium, and more recently ruthenium, catalysts in complex settings.
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