New Frontiers in Biodegradable and Bioderived Polymers: Controlled ring opening polymerization with indium catalysts to form functionalized biodegradable materials

Date: January 21, 2022 1:00 pm (ET)


  • Parisa Mehrkhodavandi
    University of British Columbia
Parisa Mehrkhodavandi

Abstract: Synthesis of highly controlled biodegradable copolymers can be carried out with cationic indium catalysts. We have developed families of cationic indium complexes supported by tridentate and tetradentate aminophenolate ligands which are the first to show reactivity towards lactones as well as epoxides and other cyclic ethers.  We show that, depending on ligand design, these complexes are excellent catalysts for the coupling of functionalized epoxides and cyclic esters to form orthoesters, for the controlled ring-opening polymerization of cyclic ethers, and for the copolymerization of cyclic ethers and esters.  Structure-function relationships and mechanistic considerations in each of these systems will be explored.

Biography: Parisa Mehrkhodavandi is a Professor at the Department of Chemistry at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada. She completed her Ph.D. work at MIT (R. R. Schrock) and her postdoctoral work at Caltech (J. E. Bercaw) before starting her independent career at UBC in 2005.  Prof. Mehrkhodavandi has garnered a number of awards including the Killam Research Fellowship and the Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship.  Her research interests are focused on the cross section of inorganic chemistry, catalysis, polymer science, and green chemistry.