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Practised procrastination

Chemistry World blog (RSC) - 27 November, 2014 - 18:01

Guest post by Heather Cassell

It’s an inevitability – there’s a task that should be doing but you can’t build up the enthusiasm. Normally mundane jobs can suddenly seem much more interesting to do.

A suspiciously tidy lab bench
Image by Jean-Pierre from Cosne-Cours-sur-Loire, France CC-BY-SA

For me it is always report writing. Although I love putting all of my results into order and writing it up succinctly for my colleagues and collaborators, I find I can rapidly lose focus. This is when the procrastination sets in. It never seems to matter how near the deadline is, how interesting my results are, or how important the document is – I feel an overwhelming desire to tidy my desk. ‘It’s important,’ I tell myself, ‘because if my desk is tidy I’ll have easy access to the papers and results I need to finish my report’. Just as a teenager’s room is never tidier than exam time, a researcher’s desk might only ever be clear when there’s a report to write.

Oh, but there are so many temptations! I’ve learned that when I’m meant to be writing a report it is best if I avoid the internet (see my previous post on the things you can discover while trawling twitter), so to physically remove the temptation often I’ll head into the lab.

But even the lab is full of potential distractions and procrastinatory aids, as there are always a diverse range of things to do! There is that pile of tip boxes that need refilling (it may have been gathering dust for weeks, but it seems urgent that they are to be filled and taken to autoclave). There are the consumables that need restocking, the buffers that need to be made, and stock solutions that need to be prepared. To the procrastinating mind, they all become more important than the task in hand. ‘If I’m not organised in the lab,’ I justify to myself, ‘then how can I work efficiently when I have finished my report?’

I try to reason with myself. I set targets and deadlines, promising myself a break if I can just reach the end of this section. As with exam dates and revision, eventually the deadline becomes so pressing that the level of stress rises and I actually buckle down to get on with the report.

It feels so good when it’s done that I consistently make promises to myself: ‘next time it will be different’; ‘next time I’ll just get it done without the distractions’. But the urge to procrastinate always returns. Who knows, without that urge my desk may never be clear.

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Categories: Education

N-Heterocyclic Carbene-Catalyzed Cyclocondensation of 2-Aryl Carboxylic Acid and Enones: Highly Enantioselective Synthesis of [small delta]-Lactones

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54
Org. Biomol. Chem., 2014, Accepted Manuscript
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02330G, CommunicationJin-Tang Cheng, Xiang-Yu Chen, Song Ye
The enantioselective N-heterocyclic carbene-catalyzed [4 + 2] cyclocondensation of 2-aryl carboxylic acids and enones was developed, affording the corresponding chiral [small delta]-lactones in good yields with good diastereo- and high enantioselectivities.
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Fluorescent organic nanoparticles of dihydropyrimidone derivatives for selective recognition of iodide using a displacement assay: application of the sensors in water and biological fluids

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54

Org. Biomol. Chem., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02152E, PaperAmanpreet Kaur, Tilak Raj, Simanpreet Kaur, Narinder Singh, Navneet Kaur
Fluorescent organic nanoparticles (FON's) derived from dihydropyrimidone derivatives (1-4) were developed and evaluated for their sensor properties.
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Stereodivergent Synthesis of the LFA-1 Antagonist BIRT 377 by Porcine Liver Esterase Desymmetrization and Curtius Rearrangement

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54
Org. Biomol. Chem., 2014, Accepted Manuscript
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02303J, PaperThomas G Back, Aaron Johnson, Matthew J. Saunders
The LFA-1 inhibitor and leukocyte adhesion suppressor BIRT-377 was prepared in high enantiomeric excess by desymmetrization of dimethyl 2-p-bromobenzyl-2-methylmalonate, followed by condensation of the resulting carboxylic acid with 3,5-dichloroaniline, saponification...
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Synthesis, and QSAR analysis of anti-oncological active spiro-alkaloids

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54
Org. Biomol. Chem., 2014, Accepted Manuscript
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02149E, PaperAS Girgis, Siva S Panda, I. S. Ahmed Farag, A. M. El-Shabiny, A. M. Moustafa, nasser saad ismail, Girinath G. Pillai, Chandramukhi S. Panda, Charles Dennis Hall, Alan R Katritzky
QSAR study describes the anti-neoplastic spiro-alkaloids with relevant molecular descriptors using CODESSA III software. The dispiro[3H-indole-3,2'-pyrrolidine-3',3''-piperidines] 24-48 were synthesized via [3+2]-cycloaddition reaction of azomethine ylides, (generated in situ via decarboxylative...
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Synthesis of N-Glycolyl Muramyl Dipeptide

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54
Org. Biomol. Chem., 2014, Accepted Manuscript
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02147A, PaperShuo Xing, James L Gleason
A novel synthetic route leading to N-glycolyl muramyl dipeptide (MDP), a bacterial glycopeptide of particular interest in studies of nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain-containing protein 2 (NOD2), is described. The synthetic strategy...
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Preparation of Luminescent Chemosensors by Post-Functionalization of Vesicle Surfaces

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54
Org. Biomol. Chem., 2014, Accepted Manuscript
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02327G, PaperBurkhard Koenig, Andreas Mueller
Surface-reactive luminescent vesicles were prepared by self-assembly of phospholipids, amphiphilic maleimides and fluorophors in aqueous solution. Those preformed liposomes were functionalized with various thiolated receptor units using a thiol-click reaction....
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Consecutive three-component synthesis of (hetero)arylated propargyl amides by chemoenzymatic aminolysis-Sonogashira coupling sequence

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54
Org. Biomol. Chem., 2014, Accepted Manuscript
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02386B, PaperSidra Hassan, Anja Ullrich, Thomas J.J. Mueller
A novel chemoenzymatic three-component synthesis of (hetero)arylated propargyl amides in good yields based upon Novozyme[registered sign] 435 (Candida antarctica lipase B (CAL-B)) catalyzed aminolysis of methyl carboxylates followed by Sonogashira coupling...
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Sugar-Derived Amine Catalyzed Intramolecular Diels-Alder Reactions

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54
Org. Biomol. Chem., 2014, Accepted Manuscript
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02219J, PaperTony K. M. SHING, Kwun W. Wu, Ho T Wu, Qicai Xiao
Six chiral hydroxylated pyrrolidine catalysts were synthesized from commercially available D-arabinose in seven steps. Various aromatic substituents [small alpha] to the amine can be introduced readily by a Grignard reaction, which...
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Probing coiled-coil assembly by paramagnetic NMR spectroscopy

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54

Org. Biomol. Chem., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02125H, PaperTingTing Zheng, Aimee Boyle, Hana Robson Marsden, Dayenne Valdink, Giuliana Martelli, Jan Raap, Alexander Kros
Here a new method to determine the orientation of coiled-coil peptide motifs is described.
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Gold-catalyzed spiro-N,O-ketal synthesis

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54

Org. Biomol. Chem., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02050B, PaperM. Grammatikopoulou, S. Thysiadis, V. Sarli
An efficient method for the synthesis of spiro-N,O-ketals with 5- and 6-membered rings was developed via a gold-catalyzed spiroamidoketalization of alkynyl amidoalcohols under mild conditions.
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Label-free fluorescence detection of kinase activity using a gold nanoparticle based indicator displacement assay

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54

Org. Biomol. Chem., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02052A, PaperCristian Pezzato, Davide Zaramella, Massimiliano Martinelli, Gregory Pieters, Mario A. Pagano, Leonard J. Prins
A straightforward fluorescence indicator-displacement assay (IDA) has been developed for the quantitative analysis of ATP[rightward arrow]ADP conversion.
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Synthesis of isoxazolidine-containing uridine derivatives as caprazamycin analogues

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54

Org. Biomol. Chem., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02142H, PaperMayumi Yamaguchi, Akira Matsuda, Satoshi Ichikawa
Simplification of caprazamycins was conducted by scaffold-hopping of the structurally complex diazepanone moiety to the isoxazolidine scaffold.
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Enantioselective synthesis of benzoindolizidine derivatives using chiral phase-transfer catalytic intramolecular domino aza-Michael addition/alkylation

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54

Org. Biomol. Chem., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02227K, PaperJiajia Guo, Shouyun Yu
An efficient and enantioselective strategy to synthesize benzoindolizidines via domino intramolecular aza-Michael addition/alkylation was developed.
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Unprecedented one-pot sequential thiolate substitutions under mild conditions leading to a red emissive BODIPY dye 3,5,8-tris(PhS)-BODIPY

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54

Org. Biomol. Chem., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB01892C, CommunicationRobinson I. Roacho, Alejandro Metta-Magana, Eduardo Pena-Cabrera, Keith Pannell
Phenylthiol performs a thiol exchange with 8-MeS-BODIPY and activates/substitutes the 3,5 positions forming a tri-thiolated BODIPY.
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[gamma]-Cyclodextrin modulates the chemical reactivity by multiple complexation

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54

Org. Biomol. Chem., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02113D, PaperJ. Fernandez-Rosas, M. Pessego, M. Cepeda-Plaza, N. Basilio, M. Parajo, P. Rodriguez-Dafonte, L. Garcia-Rio
Multiple recognition by cooperative/competitive mechanisms to form a 1 : 1 : 1 inclusion complex plays a crucial role in determining the chemical reactivity in the [gamma]-CD cavity.
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A mild copper-catalyzed aerobic oxidative thiocyanation of arylboronic acids with TMSNCS

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54

Org. Biomol. Chem., 2015, Advance Article
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02208D, CommunicationNan Sun, Liusheng Che, Weimin Mo, Baoxiang Hu, Zhenlu Shen, Xinquan Hu
A facile and generalized synthesis of aryl thiocyanates has been established via the CuCl-catalyzed oxidative coupling of arylboronic acids with TMSNCS. The reaction could be conducted at RT and under an O2 atmosphere.
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Aryl-bis-(scorpiand)-aza receptors differentiate between nucleotide monophosphates by combination of aromatic, hydrogen bond and electrostatic interactions

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54
Org. Biomol. Chem., 2014, Accepted Manuscript
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02084G, PaperJorge Gonzalez, Sanja Tomic, Alberto Lopera, Lluis Guijarro, Ivo Piantanida, Enrique Garcia-Espana
Bis-polyaza pyridinophane scorpiands bind nucleotides in aqueous medium by 10-100 micromolar affinity, dominantly by electrostatic interactions between nucleotide phosphates and protonated aliphatic amines and assisted by aromatic stacking interactions. By...
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Pd-catalyzed Heck-conjoined amidation and concomitant chemoselective Michael-addition: An efficient tandem approach to highly functionalized tetrahydroquinazolines from o-haloanilines

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54
Org. Biomol. Chem., 2014, Accepted Manuscript
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02286F, PaperAkhilesh K. Verma, Rakesh K Saunthwal, monika patel, abhinandan K. Danodia
An efficient palladium-catalyzed tandem approach for the synthesis of highly functionalized tetrahydroquinazolines 4a-q, and 5a-f by the reaction of o-haloanilines 1a-g with acrylates 2a-d and isothiocyanates 3aa-3ah/isocyanates 3ba-3bf via heck-conjoined...
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Tris(triazole) tripodal receptors as selective probes for citrate anion recognition and multichannel transition and heavy metal cations sensing

Org. and Biomol. Chem. - 27 November, 2014 - 17:54
Org. Biomol. Chem., 2014, Accepted Manuscript
DOI: 10.1039/C4OB02135E, PaperPedro Molina, Alberto Tarraga, Francisco Oton, Arturo Espinosa, Maria del Carmen Gonzalez
The three-armed pyrenyl-triazole receptor 1 behaves as highly selective fluorescent molecular sensor for citrate anion over similar carboxylates such as malate or tartrate. In addition, this receptor senses Cu2+ cations...
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