IRTG 1628 Selectivity in Chemo- and Biocatalysis (SeleCa)



Jun Okuda

Spokesperson for the Research Training Group




Rapidly changing global conditions and the imminent depletion of fossil feedstock petroleum require substantially improved catalysts for selective transformation to ensure sustainable production of chemicals in the future.
The International Research Training Group “Selectivity in Chemo- and Biocatalysis” aims at understanding efficient and selective catalytic processes on a molecular level.


In an interdisciplinary approach, aspects of efficient chemocatalysts, biocatalysts, and integrated approaches are combined to selectively produce highly functionalized molecules.

Topics under investigation include new synthetic molecular catalysts for organo¬catalysis, C-H bond activation, asymmetric catalysis of C-C and C-X bond formation, and selective polymerization.

Enzyme catalysis in non-natural environments is currently finding broader applications in the synthesis of chemicals and intermediates. New methods for designing non-natural enzyme functions coupled with new enzyme technologies, including the use of whole cells, enzymes derived from extremophiles, and hybrid catalysts for practical processes allow innovative and likely superior routes to produce chemicals.

International Collaborative Research

Ten groups of RWTH Aachen University, one associated group from Forschungszentrum Jülich, and nine groups from Osaka University working in the areas of chemo- and bio-catalysis will collaborate to offer an educational platform for selected graduate students.

The participating researchers and doctoral candidates will develop the interdisciplinary research program toward new chemo- and biocatalytic transformations.

The transnational exchange of graduate students between two completely different cultural and societal backgrounds is based on a longstanding research collaboration and will contribute to the qualification and internationalization of early-career researchers in a globalized world.


Spokesperson for the International Research Training Group is Professor Jun Okuda of the Chair of Organometallic Chemistry and the Institute of Inorganic Chemistry at RWTH Aachen University.


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