Gavin Edwards

Gavin Edwards

Gavin Edwards

B.Sc. (Hons) Ph.D. Monash

Senior Lecturer. Deputy Director of Teaching, School of Chemistry; Associate Dean (Academic Programs), Faculty of Science

Contact details

Phone: +61 2 9385 4652


Room 106 Dalton Building
UNSW Kensington 2052

Biographical Details

Born 1960. PhD studies at Monash University with G B Deacon and D StC Black. Postdoctoral research at Imperial College with W B Motherwell, 1987-1989. SSP at Cambridge University in 1997 with Professor Steven Ley. Appointed Lecturer UNSW, 1990; Senior Lecturer UNSW 1999-. Appointed Associate Dean (Undergraduate Programs) in the Faculty of Science in 2011 (now Associate Dean Academic Programs).

Research Interests

Our research covers a range of areas, from medicinal chemistry to organic synthetic methodology. 
In the quest for new synthetic methods, we have developed the use of the free radical addition of arenesulfonyl halides to alkenes and alkynes giving iodosulfones and thence vinyl sulfones as a route to heterocyclic molecules. This key reaction has led to the development of a diastereoselective synthesis of simple heterocyclic assemblies, and further application to natural product synthesis is being investigated. We are also interested in heteroatoms as controlling elements in organic reactions, such as the use of phosphorus containing groups to activate dienophiles for Diels-Alder reactions.

Selected Publications

  • A non-enzymatic, asymmetric synthesis of dicyclopentadienone, Childs BJ, Edwards GL, 1993, Tetrahedron Lett, 34, 5341.
  • Synthesis of 2-substituted nitrogen heterocycles using para-toluenesulfonyl iodide in a key step, Craig DC, Edwards GL, Muldoon CA 1997, Synlett, 1441.
  • Alkylation of vinyl sulfones as a route to 2-alkylidenetetrahydrofurans, Edwards GL, Sinclair DJ, 1999, Tetrahedron Lett, 40, 3933.
  • Oxygen to carbon rearrangements of anomerically linked alkenols from tetrahydropyran derivatives: an investigation of the reaction mechanism via a double isotopic labelling crossover study, Buffet MF, Dixon DJ, Edwards GL, Ley SV, Tate EW, 2000, Perkin 1, 1815.
  • A new synthesis of spiroketals via sulfonyl-substituted dihydropyrans Craig DC, Edwards GL, Sinclair DJ, 2001, Tetrahedron 57, 563.
  • Effect of Charge and Surface Area on the Cytotoxicity of Cationic Metallointercalation Reagents, Edwards GL, Black DStC, Deacon GB, Wakelin LPG, 2005, Can J Chem, 83, 969
  • In vitro and In vivo Studies of Neutral Cyclometallated Complexes against Murine Leukaemias, Edwards GL, Black DStC, Deacon GB, Wakelin LPG, 2005, Can J Chem, 83, 980
  • Sequential Cyclosulfonylation and Alkylation as a Versatile Strategy for Dihydropyran Synthesis, Edwards GL, Sinclair, DJ, 2005, Synthesis, 3613
  • Synthesis and Radical Reactions of Isomeric Alkenyl Oxaziridines, Black DStC, Edwards GL, Laaman SM, 2006, Synthesis, 1981