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Home > Introduction of our tenure-track faculties > Mori Keiji

Introduction of our tenure-track faculties

Mori Keiji

Affiliation Institute of Engineering
Division Division of Applied Chemistry
Research field Synthetic Organic Chemistry
Keyword(S) redox process, hydride shift, C–H bond functionalization
Research experience

・2005: Research Fellowship for Young Scientists (DC1)
・2008: Assistant Professor at Gakushuin University
・2015: Associate Professor at Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology

Educational background

・2003: BS from the Tokyo Institute of Technology
・2005: MS from the Tokyo Institute of Technology (Prof. Keisuke Suzuki)
・2008: Ph. D. from the Tokyo Institute of Technology (Prof. Keisuke Suzuki and Prof. Ken Ohmori)


・2006: Student Presentation Award in Chemical Society of Japan
・2012: JSPC award
・2012: Daiichi-Sankyo Award in Synthetic Organic Chemistry, Japan
・2015: Chemical Society of Japan Award for Young Chemists

Selected papers and publications

・K. Mori, K. Ehara, K. Kurihara, T. Akiyama: “Selective Activation of Enantiotopic C(sp3)–Hydrogen by Means of Chiral Phosphoric Acid: Asymmetric Synthesis of Tetrahydroquinoline Derivatives”, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2011, 133, 6166.
・K. Mori, S. Sueoka, T. Akiyama: “Expeditious Construction of a Carbobicyclic Skeleton via sp3-C−H Functionalization: Hydride Shift from an Aliphatic Tertiary Position in an Internal Redox Process”, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2011, 133, 2424.
・K. Mori, K. Kurihara, S. Yabe, M. Yamanaka, T. Akiyama: “Double C(sp3)–H Bond Functionalization Mediated by Sequential Hydride Shift/Cyclization Process: Diastereoselective Construction of Polyheterocycles”, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2014, 136, 3744.

Research Description

The multi-step sequence was required for the synthesis of fine chemicals (such as drugs, agrochemicals). Substantial amount of organic (inorganic) wastes were produced in the process. Thus, the development of novel and environmentally benign process was strongly demanded. The C–H bond functionalization reaction is the highly promising approach to satisfy this demands. The transformation of inert C(sp3)–H bond was difficult task, even though the extensive studies for the C–H bond functionalization reaction have been conducted. Furthermore, the employment of the toxic and expensive transition metal and excess amount of external oxidants was required to accomplish this transformation in most cases.
Recently, we have developed novel C(sp3)–H bond functionalization strategy, hydride shift/cyclization system (internal redox system). There are three key features in the reaction: (1) direct transformation of inert C(sp3)–H bond, (2) catalytic reaction with simple (conventional) acid (Brønsted or Lewis acids), and (3) construction of fused-polycyclic skeleton by single operation. Our future plan is the synthesis of complicated polycyclic framework and some biologically active compounds based on this method.

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About TUAT's tenure-track program

The enough space, which was almost same to professors, and start-up money for the research are allowed to receive in this university. The many opportunities for contacting with other many tenure-track researchers made this program more attractive and encouraging for the young principal investigators.

Future aspirations

The achievement of unprecedented, inert C(sp3)–H bond functionalization triggered by hydride shift/cyclization system, implies the possibility for the novel reactions involving transfer of another group. It would be an interesting tool for the synthesis of new type of molecules (drugs, agrochemicals, materials, and so on), which could not be synthesized by the conventional method. The task for the researchers in the university is not limited to pursuit of new scientific findings but education of the students. To keep this important task in mind, I would do my best for the education to producing qualified people.