Ohyun Kwon, Ph.D.

Laboratory Address:
Mol Sci Bldg 3235

Work Address:
Mol Sci Bldg 3505C

Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Medicine, Organic Chemistry

Ohyun Kwon received her B.S. (1991) and M.S. (1993) from Seoul National University in South Korea. In 1993, she came to the U.S. to pursue her Ph.D. (1998) from Columbia University under the guidance of S. J. Danishefsky. Her thesis work involved the synthesis of biologically significant glycolipid, asialo GM1 and Globo-H human breast tumor antigen molecule, as well as complex phomoidride terpenoids, CP-225,917 and CP-263,114. She then went to Harvard University as a Howard Hughes Postdoctoral Fellow to study chemical genetics in S. L. Schreiber's lab. There, she completed a diversity-oriented combinatorial synthesis (DOS) of a library of muticyclic compounds, as well as a library of macrocycles. Kwon joined the faculty as an assistant professor at UCLA in 2001. She has been a member of the Molecular Biology Institute (MBI) and UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center (JCCC) since 2005. Her research at UCLA evolves around the development of new nucleophilic phosphine catalysis reactions. The new reaction methodologies are used in the total synthesis of natural products and in the production of libraies of small organic molecules for chemical genetic applications.


A selected list of publications:

Lu, J.; Chan, L.; Fiji, H. D. G.; Dahl, R.; Kwon, O.; Tamanoi, F   In vivo anticancer effect of a novel inhibitor of protein geranylgeranyltransferase I, Mol. Cancer Ther, 2009; 8: 1218-1226.
Guo, H.; Xu, Q.; Kwon, O.   Phosphine-Promoted [3+3] Annulation of Aziridines with Allenoates: A Facile Entry into Highly Functionalized Tetrahydropyridines, J. Am. Chem. Soc, 2009; 131: 6318-6319.
Lu, K.; Kwon, O   Phosphine-catalyzed [4+2] Annulation: Synthesis of Ethyl 6-phenyl-1-tosyl-1,2,5,6-tetrahydropyridine-3-carboxylate Org. Synth, 2009; 86: 212-224.
Creech, G. S.; Kwon, O.   Alcohol-Assisted Phosphine Catalysis: One-Step Synthesis of Dihydropyrone from Aldehyde and Allenoate, Org. Lett, 2008; 10: 429−432.
Andrews, I.P., Kwon, O.   Highly Efficient Palladium-Catalyzed Hydrostannation of Ethyl Ethynyl Ether Tetrahedron Lett, 2008; 49: 7097-7099.
Watanabe, M.; Fiji, H. D. G.; Guo, L.; Umetsu, A.; Kinderman, S. S.; Slamon, D. J.; Kwon, O.; Tamanoi, F.   Inhibitors of protein geranylgeranyltransferase-I and Rab geranylgeranyltransferase identified from a library of allenoate derived compounds, J. Biol. Chem, 2008; 283: 9571−9579.
Creech, G. S.; Zhu, X.; Fonovic, B.; Dudding, T.; Kwon, O.   Theory-Guided Design of Brønsted Acid-Assisted Phosphine Catalysis: Synthesis of Dihydropyrones from Aldehydes and Allenoates, Tetrahedron, 2008; 64: 6935−6942.
Sriramurthy, V.; Barcan, G. A.; Kwon, O.   Bisphosphine-Catalyzed Mixed Double-Michael Reactions: Asymmetric Synthesis of Oxazolidines, Thiazolidines, and Pyrrolidines, J. Am. Chem. Soc, 2007; 129: 12928−12929 (Highlighted in SYNFACTS 2008, 19; Featured as a Synstory in SYNFORM 2008, A10−A12).
Mercier, E.; Fonovic, B.; Henry, C. E.; Kwon, O.; Dudding, T.   Phosphine Triggered [3+2] Allenoate-Acrylate Annulation: A Mechanistic Enlightenment, Tetrahedron Lett, 2007; 48: 3617−3620.
Henry, C. E.; Kwon, O.   Phosphine-Catalyzed Synthesis of Highly Functionalized Coumarins, Org. Lett, 2007; 9: 3069−3072 (Highlighted in SYNFACTS 2007, 1145).
Tran, Y. S.; Kwon, O.   Phosphine-Catalyzed [4 + 2] Annulation: Synthesis of Cyclohexenes, J. Am. Chem. Soc, 2007; 129: 12632−12633.
Castellano, S.; Fiji, H. D. G.; Kinderman, S. S.; Watanabe, M.; De Leon, P.; Tamanoi, F.; Kwon, O.   Small-Molecule Inhibitors of Protein Geranylgeranyltransferase Type I, J. Am. Chem. Soc, 2007; 129: 5843−5845.
Zhu, X.; Henry, C. E.; Kwon, O.   Stable Tetravalent Phosphonium Enolate Zwitterions, J. Am. Chem. Soc, 2007; 129: 6722−6723.
Dudding, T.; Kwon, O.; Mercier, E.   Theoretical Rationale for Regioselection in Phosphine Catalyzed Allenoate Additions to Acrylates, Imines and Aldehydes, Org. Lett, 2006; 8: 3643−3646.
Zhu, X.-F.; Henry, C. E.; Kwon, O.   A highly diastereoselective synthesis of 3-carbethoxy-2,5-disubstituted-3-pyrrolines by phosphine catalysis, Tetrahedron, 2005; 61: 6276-6282.
Tran, Y. S.; Kwon, O.   An Application of the Phosphine-Catalyzed [4 + 2] Annulation in Indole Alkaloid Synthesis: Formal Syntheses of (±)-Alstonerine and (±)-Macroline, Org. Lett, 2005; 7: 4289−4291.
Zhu, X.-F.; Henry, C. E.; Wang, J.; Dudding, T.; Kwon, O.   Phosphine-Catalyzed Synthesis of 1,3- Dioxan-4-ylidenes, Org. Lett, 2005; 7: 1387-1390.
Zhu, X.-F.; Schaffner, A.-P.; Li, R. C.; Kwon, O.   Phosphine-Catalyzed Synthesis of 6-Substituted 2-pyrones: Manifestation of E/Z-Isomerism in the Zwitterionic Intermediate, Org. Lett, 2005; 7: 2977-2980.
Du, X.; Chu, H. V.; Kwon, O.   A Concise Synthesis of the Functionalized [5-7-6] Tricyclic Skeleton of Guanacastepene A, Tetrahedron Lett, 2004; 6: 8843-8846.
Schmidt, D.R.; Kwon, O.; Schreiber, S.L.   Macrolactones in Diversity-Oriented Synthesis: Preparation of a Pilot Library and Exploration of Factors Controlling Macrocyclization, J. Comb. Chem, 2004; 6: 286-292.
Zhu, X.-F.; Lan, J.; Kwon, O.   An Expedient Phosphine-Catalyzed [4+2] Annulation: Synthesis of Highly Functionalized Tetrahydropyridines, J. Am. Chem. Soc, 2003; 125: 4716-4717.
Du, X.; Chu, H. V.; Kwon, O.   Synthesis of the [5-7-6] Tricyclic Core of Guanacastepene A via an Intramolecular Mukaiyama Aldol Reaction, Org. Lett, 2003; 5: 1923-1926.