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Dr. Christopher Uyeda

Dr. Christopher Uyeda

The discovery of new catalysts is central to the pursuit of more efficient and sustainable processes in organic synthesis and energy conversion. Research in our group encompasses the various aspects of molecular catalyst design and is broadly aimed at accomplishing fundamentally challenging bond activations and constructions while providing practical solutions to unsolved synthetic problems. Our approach capitalizes on the unique opportunities in the molecular sciences to rationally manipulate catalyst structure in order to control function and probe mechanism. We address the latter in a highly interdisciplinary manner, drawing on a diverse array of physical organic and inorganic, spectroscopic, and computational tools to characterize catalytic intermediates and transition states.

The complex architectures of metalloprotein active sites have been optimized over evolutionary timescales to mediate a range of remarkable chemical reactions. A unifying theme in our group's research is the development of new synthetic platforms that model key aspects of enzyme function without being restricted by the structural motifs and operating conditions available to natural systems. One of our current research interests is in elucidating fundamental principles of cooperative substrate activation using new multinucleating or multifunctional ligand frameworks. With these design elements as a guiding principle, we will address the selective transformation of substrates ranging from small molecules, such as H2 or CO2, to complex organic molecules using earth-abundant, mid to late first-row-transition metal centers.


  • B.S., Columbia University, 2005
  • Ph.D., Harvard University, 2011
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, California Institute of Technology, 2013


  • Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fellow, 2016
  • Career Award, 2016
  • ACS PRF Doctoral New Investigator, 2015
  • NSF CCI Postdoctoral Fellow, 2011


List of publications