As the emergence of life-threatening diseases has increased and many have become public-health concerns, the search for new effective drugs has continued to escalate. Thus, research in the Chemical Biology Program has focused on drug discovery and development. The work has encompassed the search for bioactive natural products, development of efficient synthetic routes to prepare natural and unnatural analogs of the privileged structural frameworks, ligand-based and structure-based drug design, and establishment of pharmacological and toxicological profiles, as well as evaluation of the drug-likeness of the lead compounds for further drug development.
Throughout human history, Nature has provided a repertoire of exquisite natural products whose complex structural frameworks have been unmatched even by the most active imagination. While plant-based investigations still contribute largely to our research program in natural products, our current efforts have expanded to investigate natural products from marine organisms as well as micro-organisms, such as fungi.
In addition, the current awareness of contemporary “Green Chemistry” concept has driven us to actively develop new synthetic methods which are more efficient and environmentally benign while reducing the environmental impacts. Toward this end, we have delved into chemical and biological catalysis and the utilization of microwave as an alternative source of energy.