Research in the Martin lab focuses on the development of new catalytic transformations, novel strategies for bond activation and the synthesis of bioactive molecules for the study and treatment of human disease. We find inspiration both through the identification of bioactive natural product targets and through consideration of larger problems where organic chemistry is poised to offer practical solutions (e.g. depolymerization and selective functionalization of biomass). Our goal is to provide reaction platforms that are both practical and sustainable and to work with groups specialized in biological and biochemical fields to investigate the causes and prevention of diseases such as cancer and neurodegeneration.
Another major focus of the lab is the exploration of general approaches to families of natural products where promising biological activity has been reported, in particular in the areas of neuroprotection and non-oncogene addiction. We are developing synthetic strategies to neuroprotective natural products to provide probe molecules and investigate their mechanism of action. We are also interested in new strategies for the treatment of cancer such as exploiting non-oncogene addiction. In collaboration with Dr. Jeff Perry in the Department of Biochemistry at UCR, we use docking studies to design novel enzyme inhibitors and then synthesize and test them in binding and biochemical assays.
UC Riverside College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences
Doctoral New Investigator Grant
Petroleum Research Fund
American Chemical Society
UC Riverside Center for Catalysis
UC Cancer Research Coordinating Committee