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Pharma Roundtable Awards $300,000 in Green Chemistry Research Grants

Valued Contributor III
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Eight research groups benefited from the latest round of funding from the ACS Green Chemistry Institute Pharmaceutical Roundtable (ACS GCIPR), including two international groups.  Funded research projects cover a variety of topics, including membrane separations, greener peptides and oligonucleotides synthesis, chemistry in water, electrochemistry, photochemistry and biocatalysis. The ACS GCIPR has given more than $2 million in green chemistry research funding since its inception. New requests for proposals are announced each spring. To find out more about the program, please visit:

The 2020 ACS GCIPR research grantees are:


Kamalesh K. Sirkar, Ph.D., (pictured left) Distinguished Professor of Chemical & Materials Engineering at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, was awarded $50,000 for his research titled, “Develop membranes for pressure-driven separation of solutes and solvents in the 50-600 Da range from API synthesis mixtures”. This research was selected to further the goals of the Roundtable in advancing membrane technologies as an alternative to separations in continuous manufacturing.

Tristan Lambert.jpgPhillip Milner.jpg

Profs. Tristan Lambert, Ph.D., (pictured left) and Phillip Milner, Ph.D., (pictured right) of Cornell University’s chemistry & chemical biology department have been awarded $50,000 for their research titled, “Bioinspired Metal-Organic Frameworks as Heterogeneous Catalysts for Peptide Synthesis”. This research supports the Roundtable’s medium-size molecules team in developing strategies to enhance the greenness of peptide and peptide conjugate synthesis.

Pasi Virta.jpg

Pasi Virta, Ph.D., (pictured left) professor of bio-organics at the University of Turku, Finland has been awarded $50,000 for his research titled, “Improved synthesis of nucleotide blockmers using a precipitative soluble”. This research addresses the Roundtable’s goal to optimize oligonucleotide technology and address the environmental challenge of current oligonucleotide manufacturing.

andersson.jpgDaniel_Weix-s.pngThe Roundtable has recently identified chemistry in water as a topic of interest and is targeting grants to advance this area of research. More specifically, the Roundtable seeks to increase the utility of surfactant-based chemistry in water by overcoming practical and engineering barriers. Responding to this call, Prof. Daniel J. Weix, Ph.D., (pictured right) from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, was awarded $50,000 for his research titled, “Metal-Mediated Electrochemistry: A new frontier for surfactants”. Additionally, Prof. Martin Andersson, Ph.D., (pictured left) from the Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU), has been awarded $25,000 for his research titled, “Developing New Surfactants for Easy Separation”.

Ignition Grant Winners

Every year the Roundtable awards “ignition” grants to spur novel and innovative ideas that have the potential to provide sustainable solutions to chemistry and engineering problems relevant to the pharmaceutical industry from discovery to manufacturing. Each grantee receives $25,000 in seed funding to obtain preliminary results that may then be used by the researchers to help apply for funding from traditional funding agencies. From a large field of nominations, the winners are:

Tehshik Yoon.jpgMatt_Hostetler-s.jpgProf. Matthew A. Hostetler, Ph.D., (pictured left) an assistant professor of chemistry at Marshall University has been awarded $25,000 for his research titled, “Cups: An Atom efficient and low-waste producing method of inverse solid-phase peptide synthesis”.

Tehshik P. Yoon, Ph.D., (pictured right) professor of chemistry from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, has been awarded $25,000 for his research titled, “Oxidative C–N Cross-Coupling Enabled by Iron Photochemistry”.             


Soumitra Athavale.jpgFrances Arnold.jpgSoumitra Athavale, Ph.D., (pictured left) post-doctoral scholar, and Frances H. Arnold, Ph.D., (pictured right) Linus Pauling Professor of Chemical Engineering, Biochemistry and Bioengineering at the California Institute of Technology, have been awarded $25,000 for their research titled, “Biocatalytic C-H bond Functionalization for the Synthesis of Enantioenriched Amines and Amides”.