Prof. Paolo Melchiorre

Catalysis / Light in Chemistry

Group Leader:

Paolo Melchiorre, ICREA Professor

Administrative Support:

Núria Planella

Lab. Technician:

Laia Cuesta Aluja

Postdoctoral Researchers:

Martin Berger / Aymeric Champion / Giacomo E.M. Crisenza (until Aug.) / Riccardo di Sanza / Will Hartley / Catherine M. Holden (until Feb.) / Benjamin Laroche (until July) / Dengke Ma / Danilo Machado Lustosa (until Feb.) / Xinjun Tang (until Sep.) / Jan Vilím

PhD Students:

Nurtalya Alandini (until July) / Matteo Balletti / Pablo Bonilla Domínguez (until July) / Eduardo de Pedro Beato / Adriana Faraone / Eugenio Gandolfo / Sara Kopf (until Feb.) / Laura Kqiku / Emilien Le Saux / Daniele Mazzarella (until Sep.) / Davide Spinnato / Wei Zhou / Thomas Hin-Fung Wong

Visiting Students:

Gaétan Archer (Feb. – Aug.) / Tommaso Bortolato (Jan. – Mar.) / Robert Pawlowski / Yang Yang (until Mar.)


The research of Prof. Melchiorre aims to connect two areas of molecular activation, photochemistry and organocatalysis, to provide new frameworks for chemical reactivity for the development of light-emitted asymmetric transformations. His group has shown that the synthetic potential of organocatalytic intermediates is not limited to the fundamental state, but can be expanded by exploring their photochemical activity, providing new synthetic routes for the preparation of chiral molecules that can not be achieved with the traditional methodologies.


Photochemical generation of acyl and carbamoyl radicals using a nucleophilic organic catalyst: applications and mechanism thereof
de Pedro Beato, E.; Mazzarella, D.; Balletti, M; Melchiorre, P.
Chem. Sci. 2020, 11, 6312–6324

Synthetic Methods Driven by the Photoactivity of Electron-Donor Acceptor Complexes
Crisenza, G. E. M.; Mazzarella, D.; Melchiorre, P.
J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2020, 142 (12), 5461-5476

A Photochemical Organocatalytic Strategy for the α‐Alkylation of Ketones using Radicals
Spinnato, D.; Schweitzer-Chaput, B.; Goti, G.; Ošeka, M.; Melchiorre, P.
Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2020, 59, 9485–9490


Amide Synthesis by Nickel/Photoredox‐Catalyzed Direct Carbamoylation of (Hetero)Aryl Bromides
Alandini, N.; Buzzetti, L.; Favi, G.; Schulte, T.; Candish, L.; Collins, K.; Melchiorre, P.
Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2020, 59 (13), 5248-5253

Chemistry glows green with photoredox catalysis
Crisenza, G. E. M.; Melchiorre, P.
Nat. Commun. 2020, 803


Visible Light-Activated Photoinitiators for Applications in Domestic Coatings
ERC Proof of Concept | Ref: 8995421

New Synthetic Methods Enabled by the Photochemistry of Organic Molecules and Their Use in Drug Discovery and Bioconjugation
Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación | Ref: PID2019-106278GB-I00

Melchiorre Group
AGAUR | Ref: 2017SGR981

Photochemical Enantioselective Organic Catalysis: Making Biologically Relevant Chiral Molecules with Light
Ministerio | Ref: CTQ2016-75520-P

Light-Driven Asymmetric Organocatalysis
ERC Consolidator Grant | Ref: Grant agreement no. 681840

Entrepreneuring Dynamic Self-Organized Interfaces in Photocatalysis: A multidisciplinary Training Network Converting Light into Products
MSCA ITN | Ref: Grant agreement 722591 Project Website


Theses Supervised

Nurtalya Alandini
July 8th, 2020
Universitat Rovira i Virgili
«1,4-Dihydropyridines as Versatile Reagents in Photochemical Carbon-Carbon Bond-Forming Processes»

Pablo Bonilla
July 9th, 2020
Universitat Rovira i Virgili
«Combining Iminium Ion-Mediated Catalysis and Photochemistry to Develop Enantioselective Radical Processes»

Daniele Mazzarella
September 7th, 2020
Universitat Rovira i Virgili
«C-C and C-B Bond Forming Strategies Driven by the Photoexcitation of Organocatalytic Intermediates»



ERC «Proof of Concept» grant awarded to Paolo Melchiorre