I studied chemistry at University College Dublin obtaining my PhD with Declan Gilheany in the area of M(salen) mediated asymmetric epoxidation. Following my PhD, I carried out postdoctoral research developing a method for the synthesis of P-stereogenic phosphorus compounds.
In 2005, I moved to the University of Bristol as the Research Officer in the group of Varinder Aggarwal. My research in Bristol has focused on the development of organosulfur catalysts and reagents in organic synthesis. In 2009, I was appointed as the course manager of the Bristol Chemical Synthesis Doctoral Training Centre.
In July 2012, I joined the School of Chemistry and Chemical Biology in University College Dublin, Ireland as an independent research group leader. The position was funded by Science Foundation Ireland under the Starting Investigators Research Grant scheme. I was elected as a Fellow of the Institute of Chemistry of Ireland in 2015. Following the successful conclusion of my SFI-Fellowship, I was appointed as a Lecturer in Organic Chemistry at UCD in July 2016.
Congrats to Bhargava on his first UCD paper, published in top Royal Society of Chemistry communications journal, Chemical Communications. The paper describes a novel photochemical transformation of alkynes to disulfonylated alkenes, or to sulfinylsulfonylated alkenes depending on reaction conditions. It is available (open access) from the link below. Bhargava’s research is funded by an IRC postdoctoral fellowship which he started in Sep 2022. This is also the group’s first publication using photochemistry (but not the last).
Chem Commun2023, 59, advance article. M B Reddy, E M McGarrigle*—Iodine-mediated photoinduced tuneable disulfonylation and sulfinylsulfonylation with sodium arylsulfinates. DOI: 10.1039/D2CC02011H
Congratulations to Peter and Katie on giving great talks at today’s Dublin Chemistry symposium. Peter had the privilege (and the pressure) of presenting his sustainable chemistry research in front of the father of green chemistry Prof. Paul Anastas, and he did a great job, even getting an Asimov quote in to his talk! Katie presented in a parallel stream without Prof. Anastas, but did a great job of presenting Hammett plots in the context of carbohydrate chemistry (no easy task). We also enjoyed a great Wheeler Lecture later in the day from Prof. Anastas who after showing some nice solutions to at least one of the world’s significant problems finished with the Mahatma Gandhi quote “The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would more than suffice to solve most of the world’s problems”.
Congratulations to Joe who passed his viva last Friday! Taking on a PhD is challenge but completing one during a pandemic is a real achievement. We had a celebration of course! Thanks to Dr Damien Herault (AIX Marseille) who was the external examiner, Prof. Pat Guiry (internal examiner) and Prof. Mike Casey (chair of viva committee). Dr Herault also gave a very interesting seminar in the afternoon where he shared some exciting new research results. Joe’s PhD was funded by a Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship from the Irish Research Council.
We welcome our latest postgraduate, Oana Popa to the group. Oana completed her MSc in Organic Chemistry at Politehnica University of Bucharest, Romania in 2022. Previously, she has also had a summer placement at the University of Angers, France and was an ERASMUS+ student at the University of Montpellier, France. She was a research assistant at the Institute of Organic and Supramolecular Chemistry “C. D. Nenitescu” in Bucharest, where she worked on optimising a modified Appel reaction for the synthesis of iminosugars. Her research in the group will focus on the stereoselective synthesis of oligosaccharides.
Congratulations to Gaffney who passed his PhD viva voce exam today! After 4 years of hard work the day has finally come. We are having a celebration, it’s great to have a reason to party. The examination was conducted by Prof. Gavin Miller (Uni. Keele) as the external examiner and Assoc. Prof. Paul Evans (UCD) as the internal examiner, with Assoc. Prof. Elaine O’Reilly (UCD) as chair. Gaffney’s PhD was sponsored by Science Foundation Ireland and he was affiliated with SSPC, the SFI Research Centre for Pharmaceuticals, through which he completed an industrial placement in SK Biotech. We were also happy to have a seminar from Prof. Miller on his group’s research in Keele.
A funded PhD position is available to start in the group in September 2022. The PhD position is funded by the SFI-EPSRC Atoms-to-Products Centre for Doctoral Training and BiOrbic. It is a 4-year position, with funding for stipend, EU-fees, consumables and travel. There will also be an opportunity for a placement in the University of Nottingham during the PhD. The topic of the project concerns the development of greener methods in synthetic Organic Synthesis.
There is also funding for a 1-year postgraduate position which could be an MSc or could be the first year of a PhD position for a suitable applicant.
Applications are welcome from students with, or expecting to gain, a 2:1 or first class honours BSc degree (or equivalent) or MSc. Experience in any area of modern Chemical Synthesis including organic and inorganic methodology, natural product and target molecule synthesis, organometallic chemistry, catalysis, asymmetric synthesis, flow chemistry, automation or carbohydrate chemistry would be an advantage. The closing date for applications is June 30th 2022 but the positions may be filled sooner if suitable applicants are identified so early application is advised.
Successful candidates will be encouraged to develop their chemical knowledge, technical skills and transferable skills. They will attend courses on the Dublin Chemistry programme and those offered through the CDT (in Dublin and Nottingham), and attend group meetings, seminars and international conferences. They will develop advanced synthetic chemistry skills and gain particular expertise in the development of greener organic reactions. On graduation they should be well placed to pursue a career in either the chemical industry or as an academic researcher.
We welcome Henry (‘Harry’) and Hao to the group. They are carrying out research projects in the group this summer, as a MSc research project student and as a BSc summer intern, respectively. They are working on synthetic carbohydrate chemistry and organosulfur chemistry, two strong themes in the group at the moment. We hope you both enjoy your time in the group, learn lots, and make good progress in your research.
Good luck to Joe who is starting an industrial placement today with APC Ltd. We hope you learn lots and enjoy the change of scenery in this excellent UCD spinout company. We will miss you over the summer.
Congratulations to Alex who passed her PhD viva voce exam today! After 4 years of hard work the day has finally come. We are having a celebration, it’s great to have a reason to party. The examination was conducted by Prof. Richard Grainger (Uni. Birmingham) as the external examiner and Prof. Pat Guiry (UCD) as the internal examiner, with Assist. Prof. Marcus Baumann (UCD) as chair. Alex’s PhD was sponsored by the Irish Research Council and she was affiliated with SSPC, the SFI Research Centre for Pharmaceuticals, through which she completed an industrial placement in MSD. Alex has published some of her PhD research in two papers in Org. Lett. so far, and more will follow.