Chemistry, Biotechnology and Forensic Sciences

The Chemistry and Forensic Sciences research group is based at the Geelong campus at Waurn Ponds. Research within the group focuses on the isolation, synthesis, processing and detection of compounds, especially those with biological activity. There is a strong link between Chemistry and Forensic Sciences research and innovations and research in Chemical Education. The group members include winners of the RACI Analytical Chemistry Medal, the RACI Chemical Education Medal, the BioNova Research Excellence Award, the RACI Robert Cattrall Early Career Medal, Geelong Researcher of the Year Award, the RACI Jim O'Donnell International Award, and the Golden Key Asia-Pacific Postgraduate Student Award.

Key research areas

  • Detection, isolation and characterisation of natural products
  • Use of chemiluminescence for the qualitative and quantitative determination of pharmaceuticals, antioxidants in food, other biologically active molecules, and explosives
  • Utilisation of microfluidic devices separation and detection
  • Comprehensive two-dimensional HPLC for characterisation of complex natural product samples
  • Supramolecular anion recognition and sensing using conformationally preorganised frameworks
  • Synthesis of new antibiotics based on polymyxins and the defensins
  • Indole and related antidiabetic agents targeting PPAR receptors
  • Omega-3 fatty acids, biotechnology and bioprocessing
  • Fermentation of marine microorganisms
  • Alzheimer's disease and amyloid inhibitors
  • Application of physical chemistry and computational chemistry methods to chemical "problems"
    Chemical Education
  • Forensic Science, especially the use of natural products for fingerprinting reagents and the recovery of erased serial numbers
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