Research & Teaching Faculty

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Understanding the biological mechanisms of metallotherapeutics

In collaboration with leaders in the field of developing metallotherapeutics, we are using spectroscopy to probe the coordination chemistry and related bioactivity of important classes of metal-based drugs targeted towards anticancer and antiviral applications. Elucidating the solution coordination chemistry of transition metal complexes is an important step in deciphering the biological activity of metallodrugs. In addition, we are looking to develop synchrotron-based approaches to image animal tissue to determine the localization and speciation of drugs in vivo and provide further insights into the mode of action of metal-based therapeutics.

Thamy Sriskandakumar has been investigation a series of ruthenium arene complexes with potent anticancer activity. Thamy has investigated these complexes, synthesized by Peter J. Sadler (University of Warwick), to obtain a better understanding of their inherent chemical properties, allowing us to provide new insights into their biochemical activity. We are now extending these studies into related Os(II) arene complexes, which have shown even more potential as anticancer agents.

See Sriskandakumar et al, JACS 2009 for more information.

[We are currently seeking a student to continue these studies.]