In this lecture we will explore issues of reactivity and selectivity in various ylide reactions.1 We will analyse the origin of E and Z selectivity in phosphorus ylide reactions and ask why such ylides only seem to do one reaction – olefination.2 They are hardly used for any other types of reactions that employ other ylides e.g. sulfonium/ammonium.1

We will also explore the reactivity of highly strained molecules and show how they can be utilised in the synthesis of (still) strained four membered rings.3

Finally we will discuss radical reactions and in particular C-H borylation reactions.4


1   V. K. Aggarwal, J. N. Harvey, R. Robiette, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., 2005, 44, 5468-5471.

2   R. Robiette, J. Richardson, V. K. Aggarwal, J. N. Harvey, J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2005, 127, 13468-13469.

3   A. Fawcett, T. Biberger, V. K. Aggarwal, Nat. Chem., 2019, 11, 117-122

4   C. Shu, A. Noble, V. K. Aggarwal, Nature, 2020, 586, 714–719


About School research seminars

Seminars cover all aspects of chemistry and molecular biosciences and are delivered by visiting national and international academics. PhD completion seminars are also incorporated into the program.

Seminars are usually held in person and via zoom. All are welcome to attend.  



Parnell Building, Learning Theatre (07-234)