UROP Proceedings 2021-22

School of Science Department of Chemistry 8 Development of New Catalytic Organic Processes Supervisor: SUN Jianwei / CHEM Student: LO Wai Yam / CHEM-IRE Course: UROP1000, Summer Catalysis plays a crucial role in the synthesis of biologically active molecules. Many drug molecules are synthesized via organic synthesis with the aid of catalysts where natural occurrences are much lower, and resources are scarce. While metal catalyzed reactions provide a powerful tool in drug synthesis, the recent development of organocatalysts provides new advantages over metal catalysts, including increased robustness, recyclability, decreased risk of metal contamination, and eliminated the need for consuming precious noble metals, while maintaining good selectivity and yield. Making Valuable Organic Molecules with Green Chemistry Supervisor: TONG Rongbiao / CHEM Student: HE Chenxi / CHEM Course: UROP1100, Fall Alcohol oxidation is an important reaction in organic chemistry and many chemists have spent great efforts to develop various conditions for multiple complicated substrates. However, most popular methods used at current have drawbacks in environment-friendliness, safety and operation difficulty. Therefore, we aim at developing a new method with Fenton Chemistry to achieve low-cost reagents, non-hazard waste, broad scope and high reaction yield. In this report, background information of both the present alcohol oxidation methods and the Fenton reaction will be provided first, including some important references. Then the motivation and whole research plan of timeline will be briefly discussed. After that, the research progress till 25th November will be discussed in detail for three stages, including the mechanism prediction and examination, the reaction condition modification, and the substrate scope extension. Last but not least, the reflection and limitation, following by the future direction of this project will be presented at the end. The references for this reported will be listed in the last page. Design of Controllable Enzymes for Therapeutic Applications Supervisor: VONG Kenward King Ho / CHEM Student: LAU Chi Hin / CHEM Course: UROP1100, Summer Conventional inflammation-suppressing drugs mainly target the synthesis of PGH2 from arachidonic acid, which is catalyzed by cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2). This project aims to explore the possibility of utilizing the rigid binding between MUC1-N and MUC1-C to regulate the activity of 15-hydroxyprostaglandin dehydrogenase (15-PGDH), the key enzyme controlling PGH2 catabolism. With such modification, the enzyme could be injected into sites of inflammation, leading to the controlled breakdown of PGH2. For this project, expression and purification of the modified 15-PGDH was performed.