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Nicholas Drapela
Bioorganic, Organic, and General Chemistry

B.S., Oregon State University
Ph.D., Oregon State University
Visiting Assistant Professor, Whitman College 1998-99
Visiting Assistant Professor, Colorado College 1999-2000
Assistant Professor, St. Martin's College, 2000-02
Instructor, Oregon State University, 2002-

Research Interests:

Use of Enzymatic Transformations in Organic Synthesis.
The use of naturally-occurring enzymes for the purpose of transforming molecules of interest has many advantages.  Mild and environmentally friendly conditions, stereoselective products, and high catalytic efficiency make the use of enzymes particularly attractive.  Today many enzymes are under study for applications in a wide variety of transformations.  Current research interests involve probing the reactivities and selectivities of  new or poorly explored enzymes and their products from various substrates, analysis of structure-selectivity or structure-reactivity relationships of substrates, and enzyme site-directed mutagenesis to affect enzyme selectivity/efficiency.

Current Work:

Currently, our group is focusing its effort on the synthesis of the Sequoiatones (shown above, Stierle, A.A.; Stierle, D.B.; Bugni, T. J. Org. Chem1999, 64, 5479-5484.).  These antitumor compounds, isolated from a redwood endophyte, have shown selectivity in inhibiting the growth of ovarian and breast cancer cell lines.  Our research group is shown below (from left, Jonathan Van Dyke, Jocelyn James, Loren Cochrun, Veronica Nuñez, Michelle Best, Nick Drapela).


“Enantiospecific Synthesis of (+)-Byssochlamic Acid, a Nonadride from the Ascomycete Byssochlamys fulva”, J.D. White, J. Kim, N. Drapela  J. Am. Chem. Soc.  2000, 122, 8665.

Courses Taught:

CH 121, 122, 123    General Chemistry (non-majors)
CH 221, 222, 223    General Chemistry (majors)
CH 331, 332    Organic Chemistry (non-majors)
CH 334, 335, 336    Organic Chemistry (majors)
CH 401    Research

For Chemistry advising information, please see the advising page.

Contact information:

Office:  Gilbert Hall 231
Phone:  (541) 737-9110