Department of Chemistry

College of Letters & Science
Daniel Weix

Email address: dweix@wisc.edu

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Weix Group
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A.B. 2000, Columbia University
Ph.D. 2005, University of California, Berkeley
Postdoctoral Fellow at Yale University, 2005-06
Postdoctoral Fellow at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2006-08

Wayland E. Noland Distinguished Professor of Chemistry

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Research Description

Our research program is focused on the development of conceptually new catalytic methods for organic synthesis. Our goals are to uncover, study, and design new catalytic cycles as well as develop reactions of practical value. We achieve these goals through a mixture of organometallic mechanistic studies, organic reaction development, and collaborations. Our researchers come from both synthetic organic and inorganic backgrounds and all students can expect to be well versed in current organic methods and organometallic mechanisms.

At present, we are particularly inspired by the diverse reactivity of first-row transition metals (Mn, Fe, Co, Ni, Cu), the untapped potential of combining organic radicals with transition metals, multimetallic catalysis, and the challenge of cross-coupling two different electrophiles selectively. A variety of cross-electrophile coupling reactions that have been developed in the Weix group, including aryl halides with alkyl halides, alkyl halides with acid chlorides, enones with organic halides, allylic acetates with organic halides, and epoxides with aryl halides. A particular strength of cross-electrophile coupling is functional group compatibility, even with mild carbon nucleophiles.

Our mechanistic studies have uncovered two general approaches to selective cross-coupling: the coupling of an organic radical with an organometal intermediate and the selective generation of allylnickel intermediates from enones that can then react with other electrophiles. These mechanistic studies have, in turn, led to the development of new reactions. For example, the revelation that the coupling of alkyl halides with aryl halides proceeds by the coupling of an aryl halide with an alkyl radical led to the development of alternative methods for generating radicals, such as with Ti(III) and Co(Pc).

Awards and Honors

ACS Cope Scholar Award 2020
JSPS Invitational Fellowship for Research in Japan 2017
Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science 2016
Green Chemistry Award, Pfizer-Groton Green Chemistry Team 2015
Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award, Camille & Henry Dreyfus Foundation 2014

Selected Publications

Aguirre AL, Loud NL, Johnson KA, Weix DJ, Wang Y. ChemBead Enabled High-Throughput Cross-Electrophile Coupling Reveals a New Complementary Ligand. Chemistry-A European Journal. 2021;.
Gilbert MM, Weix DJ. Mastering mono-bond metathesis. Nature Chemistry. 2021;.
Goldfogel MJ, Huang LB, Weix DJ. Cross-Electrophile Coupling: Principles and New Reactions. Ogoshi S. 2020. pp. 183-222.
Kim S, Goldfogel MJ, Gilbert MM, Weix DJ. Nickel-Catalyzed Cross-Electrophile Coupling of Aryl Chlorides with Primary Alkyl Chlorides. 2020;142:9902-9907.
Wang J, Hoerrner ME, Watson MP, Weix DJ. Nickel-Catalyzed Synthesis of Dialkyl Ketones from the Coupling of N-Alkyl Pyridinium Salts with Activated Carboxylic Acids. Angewandte Chemie-International Edition. 2020;.