Mike Nutt

Doctor of Philosophy Student, Dr

  • The University of Western Australia (M310), 35 Stirling Highway,

    6009 Perth


Calculated based on number of publications stored in Pure and citations from Scopus

Personal profile

Research interests

  1. Thalidomide derivatives as potential agents for treating liver cancer
  2. Synthesis of heterocycles using a novel rhodiumII-catalysed tandem/domino approach
  3. Application of these methodologies to the total synthesis of natural products

Current projects

Thalidomide and its commercially available derivatives possess anti-cancer properties and are already used as effective treatments for hematological cancers like multiple myeloma. Using modern transition metal catalyzed cross-coupling reactions, we are able to rapidly generate a library of structurally diverse thalidomide analogues, which can then be assessed for their ability to selectively inhibit liver cancer proliferation. Some of these compounds have demonstrated remarkable activity in in vitro model assays of liver cancer growth/survival and metastasis. Importantly we are now also working to better understand the mode of action of these lead compounds at the molecular level to further fine tune their structure-activity profile.

Globally liver cancer is the 5th most common cancer, and the 3rd most common cause of cancer-related deaths. Treatment options are limited and often ineffective – currently only one chemotherapeutic is available, and it is associated with considerable off-target toxicity. We hope that by making drug selectivity a priority in our screening process, we may identify agents that could lead to the development of safer, more effective drugs for liver cancer with less adverse side-effects.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 14 - Life Below Water

Education/Academic qualification

Chemistry, Bsc. (Hons), The Design and Synthesis of Thalidomide Analogues as Potential Therapeutics for the Treatment of Liver Cancer, The University of Western Australia

Feb 2017Nov 2017

Award Date: 1 Dec 2017

Research expertise keywords

  • Medicinal Chemistry
  • Drug development
  • Catalysis
  • Total synthesis
  • transition metal organometallic chemistry
  • Organic chemistry


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