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Top 20 in JACSTop 20 in JACS

Research into a new catalyst for the production of hydrogen from ammonia by Professor Bill David, DPhil student Josh Makepeace, and colleagues at the ISIS Neutron and Muon Facility was one of the top 20 most downloaded articles from the Journal of the American Chemical Society website over the past 12 months. Cheap and effective catalysts for the decomposition of ammonia may help pave the way for its use in a variety of energy storage applications.

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Lilly Prizes for Excellence in Organic Chemistry ResearchLilly Prizes for Excellence in Organic Chemistry Research

The Lilly Prizes for Excellence in Organic Chemistry Research are awarded by Eli Lilly and Company Ltd. They are awarded for excellence in the first year of postgraduate study and are assessed on the quality of experimental work, written submission and viva voce at the point of examination for PRS transfer of status to DPhil. Dr Magnus Walter from Lilly’s came to award the prizes on Thursday 22 January.

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£2.2M Project led by Professor Tom Brown£2.2M Project led by Professor Tom Brown

Business Secretary Vince Cable has announced £40M investment in UK synthetic biology, this includes £8M to help create the building blocks of synthetic biology – the synthetic fragments of DNA needed to create useful biological components. The funding will build capacity in DNA synthesis through University partnerships. Of that £2.2M is for a project at Oxford, Liverpool, Bristol, Southampton, and Birmingham universities led by Professor Tom Brown, which will analyse DNA made by modern ultra-high throughput chemical methods and optimise the process. They will also explore new ways to make large pieces of DNA.

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Fiery science experiment on chilli heatFiery science experiment on chilli heat

Students from across Camden and Haringey have used chemistry to test the heat of chillies at a workshop led by Oxford University academics. A-level pupils studying chemistry listened to talks and carried out experiments with chillies at the event hosted by Highgate School on Saturday. Schools taking part included Camden School for Girls in Kentish Town, La Sainte Union School in Dartmouth Park, Maria Fidelis School in Euston, and Alexandra Park School in Muswell Hill. The workshop, led by electrochemists at Oxford University, was designed to equip pupils with the skills to carry out their own research project linked to their findings from the day.

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Dr Allan Chapman wins the RAS' Jackson-Gwilt medalDr Allan Chapman wins the RAS' Jackson-Gwilt medal

Dr. Allan Chapman - Part II supervisor for the History of Science - has been awarded the prestigious Jackson-Gwilt medal of the Royal Astronomical Society. The Jackson-Gwilt Medal is awarded for single investigations of outstanding merit in either: the invention, improvement or development of astronomical instrumentation or techniques; achievement in observational astronomy; or in the history of astronomy.

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Published in NaturePublished in Nature

Research by Hengzhi You, Emeline Rideau and Mireia Sidera of the Fletcher group has been published in Nature. Editor’s summary: "The paper reports a new and broadly applicable method for the catalytic asymmetric synthesis of C-C bonds, one that fills a long-standing gap in the armoury of the synthetic organic chemist…the method makes use of a copper catalysed dynamic kinetic asymmetric transformation using racemic substrates and alkyl nucleophiles.” The method was also used to make natural products active against leprosy and tuberculosis.

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‘Why choose SBM?’ - SBM CDT Promotional Film‘Why choose SBM?’ - SBM CDT Promotional Film

The EPSRC CDT in Synthesis for Biology and Medicine (SBM) has released a promotional film about their 4-year doctoral programme in synthetic chemistry. Students from the first cohort explain their reasons for applying to SBM and how their first few months on the programme have exceeded their expectations. The film is mainly directed at prospective candidates to this PhD programme, highlighting the interdisciplinary environment of the CDT, the focus on developing next-generation synthetic chemists and the Department¹s research environment and facilities. For more information on SBM CDT: http://www.oxfordsynthesiscdt.ox.ac.uk/

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University Science Blog highlights Ritchie/Hancock breath research.University Science Blog highlights Ritchie/Hancock breath research.

A recent publication in the Journal of Breath Research features a collaboration between the Ritchie/Hancock groups in the PTCL, the Oxford Hospital Trust, and the spin-out company Oxford Medical Diagnostics. The work demonstrated a positive relationship between breath acetone and blood ketones in a study of children and young adults with type 1 diabetes, and indicated that breath testing may be of significance in the management of the disease, avoiding the normal method of blood testing for ketones. In addition to featuring on the University Science Blog the results have been widely reported in the press, and have been the subject of a television presentation by Reuters.

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Izatt-Christensen Award for Professor Paul BeerIzatt-Christensen Award for Professor Paul Beer

Professor Paul Beer has been awarded the 2015 Izatt-Christensen Award for his great impact on the field of macrocyclic and supramolecular chemistry both in creative research and in the training of students. The Award is sponsored by IBC Advanced Technologies, Inc. and will be presented at the Symposium on Macrocyclic and Supramolecular Chemistry, to be held in Strasbourg, France June 28-July 2, 2015. Professor Paul Beer will have the honor of presenting the Award Lecture at that Symposium. The Award consists of a plaque and an honorarium of $3000.

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Published in Nature Communications Published in Nature Communications

Sub-surface Modification of ​Palladium in Catalysis' presented in Nature Communications Aaron Chan and Hanif Mahadi of Edman Tsang group in collaboration with James Cookson and colleagues of Johnson Matthey have recently demonstrated that boron atoms in ​palladium interstitial lattice sites show a strong host–guest electronic interaction. The adsorptive properties of ​palladium are thus modified by the subsurface boron atoms and display ultra-selectivity in a number of challenging alkyne hydrogenation reactions, which outclass the performance of conventional Lindlar catalysts

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University Science Blog Highlights Bayley ResearchUniversity Science Blog Highlights Bayley Research

Dr Gokce Su Pulcu working the Professor Bayley research group has had a recent publication published in this week's Nature Nanotechnology highlighted in the University's science blog. The paper records the for the first nanometre-sized steps of a walking molecule. The breakthrough is a significant milestone on the long road towards developing 'nanorobots'

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Thieme Chemistry AwardThieme Chemistry Award

Dr Robert Paton has received a Thieme Chemistry Journal Award for 2015. Thieme Chemistry Journal Awardees are chosen by the editorial boards of Synlett, Synthesis and Synfacts as promising young professors at the beginning of their career.

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On the cover of the Journal of Chemical PhysicsOn the cover of the Journal of Chemical Physics

Research by the Doye group has featured on the cover of the Journal of Chemical Physics. Their simulations reveal the mechanism underlying silver iodide's exceptional ability to nucleate ice. The cover image shows both the hexagonal ice-like layer that rapidly forms at the surface and the further ice growth that occurs from this layer.

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Oxford University Teaching AwardsOxford University Teaching Awards

Dr Nicholas Green has received an Individual Teaching Award - made in recognition of Nicholas’ contribution to teaching and learning. His work has been well received by students and staff alike. The Teaching Awards scheme, which is coordinated by the Oxford Learning Institute, recognises excellence in college and University teaching, with the winners selected by their divisions. In addition to academic staff, the award winners include a number of administrative and support staff, including library staff, who were recognised for their contributions to the success of University courses.

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Wiley PTC Practical Prizes November 2014Wiley PTC Practical Prizes November 2014

Six Chemistry students were honoured for their practical work in Physical and Theoretical Chemistry at the Physical & Theoretical Chemistry Part II Open Day and Wine Reception on Monday 24 November 2014, sponsored by Wiley. The winning students were Yining Yang (1st Year, Merton College), William Hartz (1st Year, St Catherine's College), Rebecca Brown (2nd Year, St Hugh's College), Thomas Vipond (2nd Year, Keble College), Susanna Archer (3rd Year, Queen's College), Philip Welch (3rd Year, University College). Congratulations on an outstanding performance in the PTC practical laboratories. The Department is very grateful to Wiley for funding these prizes and supporting the wine reception.

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On the cover of Nature Chemistry December EditionOn the cover of Nature Chemistry December Edition

Research by Dr Matthew Langton, Sean Robinson, Prof. Paul Beer and co-workers has been highlighted on the front cover of Nature Chemistry. Their paper describes the use of beta-cyclodextrin-functionalised rotaxanes as a platform to investigate halogen bonding intermolecular interactions in water. The results demonstrate that the halogen bonding systems can significantly outperform the hydrogen bonding analogues for anion recognition in water, and suggest that the interaction can serve as a basis for molecular recognition and assembly in aqueous solvents. The cover image was produced Dr. Karl Harrison.

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Review Highlighted on the cover of OrganometallicsReview Highlighted on the cover of Organometallics

The review by John Brown on the 'Rhodium Asymmetric Hydrogenation Observed during its Exponential Growth Phase' has been featured no the cover of Organometallics. The cover illustrates how NMR was very helpful in unraveling the intricacies of rhodium-catalyzed asymmetric hydrogenation, and the results provide a practical illustration of the Curtin-Hammett Principle. The artwork was design by Karl Harrison.

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RSC's Chemistry World Highlights paper by Richard Cooper and Jerome WickerRSC's Chemistry World Highlights paper by Richard Cooper and Jerome Wicker

Chemistry World has written an article about a paper published in the RSC journal CrystEngComm by Richard Cooper and Jerome Wicker on a machine learning approach to predict whether a small organic molecule will be able to crystallise. Since crystallinity is vital both for determining structures, and also for the delivery of many drugs, this work could provide valuable information.

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Syngenta Scholarship Scheme Interactive WorkshopsSyngenta Scholarship Scheme Interactive Workshops

Congratulations to Marta Brambilla from the Davies group, who was awarded a runner-up prize for her performance at the Syngenta Scholarship Scheme Interactive Workshops 2014

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GlaxoSmithKline Prizes 2014GlaxoSmithKline Prizes 2014

The Department of Chemistry was very pleased to welcome Dr Pan Procopiou to present the GlaxoSmithKline Prizes to the award winners: Sarah Morrow, Joseph Mason, Constantin Giurgiu, Susan Leung and Matthew Reeves

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Holly wins poster prizeHolly wins poster prize

Holly Reeve in the Vincent group won the poster prize at the RSC’s Challenges in Catalysis for Pharmaceuticals and Fine Chemicals meeting in London on 5 November.

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Postgraduate Studentship from FindAPhDPostgraduate Studentship from FindAPhD

Sarah Morrow, who joined the first Synthesis for Biology & Medicine CDT cohort in October, has been awarded the Physical, Chemical and Earth Sciences PhD Scholarship, worth £500, from FindAPhD.com. Sarah, who is also the recipient of an Oxford-Radcliffe Studentship at University College, is thrilled to have won this prize: “I am glad that the drawing goes some way to explain the importance of the interdisciplinary aspect of my training and the application of Chemistry to the wider world.

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Pfizer Second Year Graduate Poster Symposium 2014Pfizer Second Year Graduate Poster Symposium 2014

Congratulations to Alexander Graham Alexander Cavell & Lukas Pfeifer on winning prizes at the poster session. The poster session followed the Pfizer Symposium talks by Dr Scott L. Cockroft (University of Edinburgh), Dr Tom D. Sheppard (University College London), Dr Ai-Lan Lee (Heriot-Watt University) and Prof. George M. Whitesides (Harvard)

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Hot papers in Angewandte ChemieHot papers in Angewandte Chemie

Two recent "hot papers' from the Martin Smith group have recently been published in Angewandte Chemie. The first paper features a concise asymmetric synthesis of gephyrotoxin, a complex alkaloid isolated from the poison dart frog. The second relates to a catalytic asymmetric synthesis of axially chiral biaryls via a cation directed SNAr reaction.

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RSC thesis prizeRSC thesis prize

Matthew Langton (Beer group) has been awarded the inaugural RSC Macrocyclic and Supramolecular Chemistry Group Thesis Award for best PhD thesis. His thesis entitled "Interlocked host molecules for anion recognition and sensing in aqueous solutions" describes various aspects of anion supramolecular chemistry, including halogen bonding-anion interactions in water, nitrate anion recognition by rotaxane and catenane hosts, and lanthanide-based rotaxanes for anion sensing. He receives a Prize and has been invited to give a talk at the up-coming Macrocyclic and Supramolecular Chemistry (MASC) 2014 conference in Norwich in December.

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