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Professor Stephen M Goldup MChem, PhD, FRSC

Professor of Chemistry and Royal Society Wolfson Fellow

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Prof Steve Goldup leads a research group investigating the synthesis, properties and applications of interlocked molecules in a range of areas including catalysis, sensing, materials and chemical biology. He is particularly interested in new forms of stereochemistry that arise from the mechanical bond.

We are fascinated by the way that linking molecules together using mechanical bonds can lead to new properties and applications

Steve obtained an MChem degree from the University of Oxford where he began his research career with a Part II project in the group of Sir Prof. Jack Baldwin. He continued his research training with a PhD in natural product synthesis under the supervision of Prof. Tony Barrett before shifting focus to apply his synthetic skills to the realisation of mechanically interlocked non-natural products during post doctoral work with Prof. David Leigh at the University of Edinburgh where in 2007 he was appointed as Fixed Term Lecturer in Organic Chemistry.

In 2008 he moved to Queen Mary with the award of a Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship and in October 2009 he was awarded a Royal Society University Research Fellowship.

In October 2014 the group moved to the University of Southampton where Steve took up the position of Associate Professor.

In August 2017, Steve was promoted to Professor of Chemistry and in 2019 he was awarded a Royal Society Wolfson Research Fellowship. Research in the Goldup Group focusses on the synthesis of novel mechanically interlocked molecules and their application as sensors, catalysts and materials.

Research interests

Our research focus is on the properties and applications of mechanically interlocked molecules such as rotaxanes and catenanes. These intriguing structures have been shown to have potential applications in catalysis, drug delivery, electronic materials and sensing. In addition, we develop new ways to make these molecules efficiently so that what we discover might one day be useful! We have developed some of the most efficient methods to access rotaxanes and catenanes, including examples where the molecules are chiral even though their individual components are not, so called “mechanically chiral” molecules (Chem. Soc. Rev. 2018, 47, 5266). 

PhD Supervision:

  • Andrew Heard
  • Jack Maynard
  • Theerapoom Boonprab
  • Shu Zhang
  • Matthew Fitzpatrick
  • Federica Rizzi
  • Arnau Rubio Rodriguez
  • Andrea Savoini
  • Peter Gallagher
  • Patrick Butler 

Research group

Functional Inorganic, Materials and Supramolecular Chemistry

  • Associate Editor of Chemical Science
  • Advisory Board member for Chemical Society Reviews
  • Secretary and Treasurer of the RSC Macrocyclic and Supramolecular Chemistry Interest Group
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Professor Stephen M Goldup
Chemistry, University of Southampton, Southampton SO17 1BJ, United Kingdom

Room Number : 30/4037

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