Mahurin Honors College Capstone Experience/Thesis Projects



Additional Departmental Affiliation


Document Type



There are extremely important uses for platinum when it comes to the treatment of cancers and dementias. One potential therapeutic combines platinum with a structure known as phenanthroline. This platinum phenanthroline structure is normally extremely water-insoluble, rendering it difficult to study and use in biological systems. The Williams’ Biochemistry Laboratory endeavored to find a simpler synthetic pathway for a water-soluble phenanthroline product. While unsuccessful in identifying a product as of yet, many synthetic pathways have been ruled out, and more hypothetical pathways are being formulated for testing.

Among the strategies analyzed are varying solvent, reagents, apparatus, methodology, and temperature in order to coax platinum(II) 1,10-phenanthroline dichloride into solution to promote reaction with more water-soluble compounds. Among potential future hypotheses are the use of harsher solvents and potentially increasing the oxidation state of platinum.

Advisor(s) or Committee Chair

Kevin Williams, Ph.D.


Biochemistry | Biology | Chemistry