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November 16th, 2021 Webinar Speakers

Our next webinar will take place via the internet on Tuesday November 16th at 11 AM EST/ 4 PM GMT. Sign up on our mailing list to receive the Zoom link!

We hope to see/hear from you all at one of our sessions or as one of the next speakers. If you are an early career scientist and would like to present your research, don't hesitate to submit an abstract today! For now, please learn more about our current speakers and their research below. We also thank the generous support from Cell Reports Physical Science, Merck, and the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Our featured speakers this week are Maria Jackeline Rodrigues Dos Santos (undergraduate student, Federal University of Parana in Brazil), and Dr. Vladimir Akhmetov (postdoctoral researcher, Martin Luther University, Germany).


MARIA JACKELINE R. DOS SANTOS (on Twitter @mariaajacke)

Biography: Maria is a chemistry student at the Federal University of Parana in Brazil. She studies colloidal physical chemistry and polymers at the BioPol Laboratory, and is a scientific illustrator.

Title of Talk: Salt-induced gelation of xiloglucan: rheological characterization

Abstract: XG gels can be obtained from different methodologies, such as enzymatic degalatation, solvent exchange or through the addition of cosmotropic salts. Objective of this work was to evaluate the gelation of isolated XG by rheological analysis. Frequency and amplitude sweep rheological experiments, viscosity curve, thixotropy and gelation kinetics were performed, monitoring the G' and G'' modules in a TA Instruments HR10 rheometer. Through rheological tests, it was possible to characterize the formation of gelled networks, demonstrating that the salt possibly interferes in the hydrogen bonds of XG, promoting the formation of hydrophobic bonds that resulted in the formation of permanent and thermoreversible networks.

DR VLADIMIR AKHMETOV (on Twitter @AkhmetovVL)

Biography: Vladimir graduated from Moscow State University in 2017 (major in Organic Chemistry), and then started a PhD in Friedrich-Alexander University (Erlangen, Germany) with Prof. Hirsch (2018-2019) and moved for a postdoc with Prof. Amsharov at Martin Luther University (Halle, Germany), where he is currently a junior group leader. His research is concerned with developing organic chemistry on metal oxides, and his talk will be devoted to some recent discoveries in this realm.

Title of Talk: Soft π-Activation of Alkynes. "Golden" Reactivity of Alumina

Abstract: The ability to induce powerful atom-economic transformation of alkynes is the key feature of carbophilic π-Lewis acids such as gold- and platinum-based catalysts. The unique catalytic activity of these compounds in electrophilic activations of alkynes is explained through relativistic effects, enabling efficient orbital overlapping with π-systems. For this reason, it is believed that noble metals are indispensable components in the catalysis of such reactions. In this study, we report that thermally activated γ-Al2O3 activates enynes, diynes, and arene-ynes in a manner enabling reactions that were typically assigned to the softest π-Lewis acids, while some were known to be triggered exclusively by gold catalysts. We demonstrate the scope of these transformations and suggest a qualitative explanation of this phenomenon based on the Dewar–Chatt–Duncanson model confirmed by density functional theory calculations.

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