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Synthetic and medicinal chemistry studies of the scopariusicides

Summary of project

The scopariusicides are immunosuppressive natural products, isolated from the aerial parts of Isodon scoparius, a herb used in traditional Chinese medicine. Scopariusicide A has been synthesised from an ent-clerodane derivative (also obtained from Isodon scoparius) using a photocycloaddition strategy to form the cyclobutane ring (Org Lett, 2015, 17, 6062−6065), and a small number of analogues prepared by the same route which concentrate on replacing the ester group with various amides.

Methodology developed in the Sheldrake group at the Institute of Cancer Therapeutics is ideally suited for the synthesis of this natural product and simplified analogues. The aim of this PhD project is to conduct synthetic studies to complete a total synthesis of scopariusicide A, and determine structure activity relationships to identify the mimimum active structure. It will provide training in synthetic methodology and strategy, analytical techniques for structure determination, and basic cell culture/cytotoxicity studies.

Entry requirements

2:1 honours in a Bachelors, or Masters degree, in a relevant subject area.


Applicants will need to have their own funding or external sponsorship. A bench fee will be payable in addition to the tuition fees.


Title and name:
Dr Helen Sheldrake
Lecturer in Organic and Medicinal Chemistry
Email address:
Telephone number :
Work+44 (0) 1274 236858
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See the PhD (School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences) course page to find out more about studying at the University of Bradford, including fees, how to apply, facilities, and the support available to you.

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