75th CEMS Colloquium


Prof. Kenichiro Itami (Nagoya University)


17:30 - 18:30, September 18, 2019 (Wednesday)


Okochi-Hall, RIKEN


Making New Forms of Nanocarbons


Our goal is the creation of super molecules, innovative functional molecules with significant properties and/or beautiful molecules. To this end, we have focused on catalyst-enabling synthetic chemistry with broad directions, including applications in molecular nanocarbons, pharmaceuticals, and plant/animal chemical biology, and the development of rapid molecule-assembly methods using unique catalysts.

In particular, we have pioneered molecular nanocarbon science by the bottom-up synthesis of structurally uniform nanocarbons of fundamental and practical importance. Representative achievements include: (1) the development of single-step aromatic π-extension (APEX) methods for the rapid and programmable synthesis of nanocarbon molecules (Science 2018, Nature Commun. 2015, Nature Chem. 2015); (2) the synthesis of carbon nanorings, nanobelts and pure nanotubes (ACIE 2009, Science 2017, Nature Chem. 2013, Nature Commun. 2018, Nature Commun. 2019); (3) the first precision synthesis of graphene nanoribbons controlling width, edge structure, and even length (Nature 2019); and (4) the synthesis of topologically unique nanocarbons such as warped nanographenes, carbon nanocages, all-benzene catenanes, and trefoil knots (Science 2019, Nature Chem. 2013). In this talk, most recent beautiful molecular nanocarbons will be presented.

In this talk, we will also describe about our exciting interdisciplinary research conducted at the Institute of Transformative Bio-Molecules (ITbM) in Nagoya University, where we aim at developing game-changing molecules or plant biology, chronobiology, and live imaging. By using our original rapid molecule-assembling catalysts, a number of lead compounds were rapidly discovered. The overview of ITbM and our exciting on-going collaborative projects merging synthetic chemistry, plant biology, animal biology, computational chemistry, and live imaging will be briefly described.