The program “Chemical Sciences for Nanostructures and Biological Applications” involves 11 researchers with main objective to coordinate multidisciplinary research at the molecular, macromolecular and mesoscopic scales with diverse applications in pharmaceuticals, nanomedicine, biotechnology and environment.
The main topics of current research include synthesis, characterisation, biological and computational studies of molecules, materials and processes, and are organized as follows:
- Total synthesis of natural products; design, synthesis and chemical biology of related analogues for applications in life sciences.
- Synthesis of novel luminescent materials for applications in analytical, bioanalytical chemistry and dye-sensitized solar cells.
- Development of cyclodextrin-based multimodal molecular/drug transporters and release systems.
- Synthesis of novel chiral organocatalysts and chiral organo-inorganic hybrid catalysts for asymmetric organic reactions.
- Synthesis and characterization of organic and inorganic polymeric nanocontainers as drug delivery systems for targeted therapy.
- Studies of cell proliferation and apoptosis processes with reference to new molecules/materials applicable to cancer and infective diseases.
- Innovative of free radical mechanisms and products for application to nanomedicine and biotechnology.
- Macromolecular crystallization methods and crystal structure analysis of biomacromolecules.
- Development of ceramic nanocontainers for antibacterials, heat storage, light traps and/or corrosion protection.
- Development of new or modified nanomaterials based on electron and nuclear spins (e.g. trapped atoms in silicon-oxide) with long spin coherence times for quantum computing applications.
- Free radical-based processes and mechanisms involved in the functioning of new devices and materials.
- Structural studies and characterisation of molecular/supramolecular entities, macromolecules and related nanostructures using a number of spectroscopic methods (high resolution liquid state NMR, pulsed EPR, ENDOR, Raman, BET, DLS, FRA, Pstat, Femto Ammeter FRA, Network Analysers, UV-Vis and fluorescence emission, FT-IR) as well as microscopic approaches (AFM, STM) and X-ray crystallography.
- Theoretical studies and computational modelling of complex dynamical systems, including nonlinear dynamics/kinetics (reaction-diffusion processes and catalysis), kinetic Monte Carlo methods for stochastic processes, bioinformatics, MRI and f-MRI neuron network modelling and simulations.
- Computational studies including density functional theory, semiempirical and ab-initio methods for the prediction of properties for molecular systems with pharmaceutical and environmental interest.
The program addresses the path from research to innovation in all these strategic topics with a strong commitment to national, European and international competitiveness.