Alexandros Zografos
Group Members





Total Synthesis of Natural Products and Chemical Innovation

Our Laboratory is focused on the total synthesis of naturally complex molecular architectures. Under this basic topic our group seeks to invent novel general synthetic methods as answers to longstanding chemical problems.

1. Divergent Total Synthesis of Natural Products. Total synthesis of naturally occurring compounds with complex molecular architectures, useful biological properties and interesting mechanism of biological action, becomes an engine for discovery that drives the field of organic chemistry. Constant target selection and creative retrosynthetic analyses based on their biosynthesis is the key of inspiration for their total synthesis, targeting in revealing missing synthetic pathways to longstanding chemical problems.

Under this basic concept we are trying to uncover "common synthetic scaffolds" that can lead to efficient divergent total synthesis of natural products.

"A tour de force" utilizing this method provided a lbrary of furo-sesquiterpenes and sesquiterpene lactones with more than 60 members. Libraries are constantly enriched and biologically screened focusing on their anticancer activity.


Libraries based on common synthetic scaffolds has also been prepared for:


Pyridone alkaloids (22 members)


Pyrrole imidazole alkaloids (underway)


2. Discovery and Development of Novel Reactions for Target-Oriented Synthesis. New reaction discovery is the most important research activity in the area of organic chemistry, and target-directed reaction discovery is one of the best strategies for identifying important transformations to be developed.

  Focus on CH-activation:

  Currently, we are particularly interested in CH-activation-alkylation of heterocycles and the CH-oxidation of hydrocarbons.


Alkenylation of 4-hydroxy-2-pyridones: Development of the first Heck-type reaction on the 4-hydroxy-2-pyridone core enabling the utilization of both activated and unactivated alkenes


Arylation of 4-hydroxy-2-pyridones: Development of the first CH-arylation of 4-hydroxy-2-pyridone core.


CH-Oxidations: Development of methods utilizing molecular oxygen as the sole oxidant for the CH-oxidation of hydrocarbons.

   Our group is also proud to be part of the CHAOS-COST Action (CH-Activation in Organic Synthesis)


3. Biological Evaluation. Although our group is certainly oriented in the fundamental research of organic synthesis several collaborations are established with field experts for the biological evaluation of the newly synthesized compounds.


Collaborations are ongoing with:

Prof. Ioannis Vizirianakis; Pharmaceutical Department, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (anticancer activity of sesquiterpenoids)


Prof. Dimitrios Fatouros; Pharmaceutical Department, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (sesquiterpenoids as enhancers)


Prof. Dimitrios Georgiadis; Department of Chemistry, National University of Athens


Prof. Enrique Gómez Bengoa, Facultad de Químicas Donostia - San Sebastián, UPV-EHU (DFT calculations on cycloisomerization reactions)



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This site was last updated 11-12-2016