Steven V. Ley

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Steven Ley
Steven Victor Ley

(1945-12-10) 10 December 1945 (age 75) [1]
Alma mater Loughborough University of Technology (BSc, PhD) [2]
Scientific career
Thesis Studies in the chemistry of benzobicyclo systems  (1972)
Doctoral advisor Harry Heaney [4]
Influences Derek Barton [5]

Steven Victor Ley (born 10 December 1945) CBE FRS FRSC is Professor of Organic Chemistry in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Cambridge, and is a Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge. He was President of the Royal Society of Chemistry (2000–2002) and was made a CBE in January 2002, in the process. In 2011, he was included by The Times in the list of the "100 most important people in British science". [6] [7] [8] [9]



Ley was educated at Loughborough University of Technology where he was awarded a Bachelor of Science and PhD. [2] [4]


Ley's main research field are the total synthesis of biomolecules. His group has published extensively on this topic, and has completed the synthesis of more than 140 natural target compounds, with notable examples including indanamycin, routiennocin, avermectin B1a, okadaic acid, spongistatin, thapsigargin, epothilone A, antascomicin B, bengazole A and rapamycin. His total synthesis of azadirachtin, completed in 2007, is widely regarded as one of the major landmarks in total synthesis. In the course of this work, he has also made substantial advances in many areas of organic chemistry, including the development of new catalysts, protecting groups and reagents. He is one of the inventors of TPAP, a widely employed oxidising reagent. He has also pioneered the use of immobilised reagents and flow techniques in multi-step organic synthesis. This work now incorporates flow chemistry for multistep organic synthesis applications.

Honours and awards

As of 2018, Ley's work of over 880 papers [10] has been recognised by about 40 major prizes and awards, the most recent of which are:

Related Research Articles

Royal Society of Chemistry UK learned society

The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) is a learned society in the United Kingdom with the goal of "advancing the chemical sciences". It was formed in 1980 from the amalgamation of the Chemical Society, the Royal Institute of Chemistry, the Faraday Society, and the Society for Analytical Chemistry with a new Royal Charter and the dual role of learned society and professional body. At its inception, the Society had a combined membership of 34,000 in the UK and a further 8,000 abroad. The headquarters of the Society are at Burlington House, Piccadilly, London. It also has offices in Thomas Graham House in Cambridge where RSC Publishing is based. The Society has offices in the United States at the University City Science Center, Philadelphia, in both Beijing and Shanghai, China and Bangalore, India.

Richard R. Schrock

Richard Royce Schrock is an American chemist and Nobel laureate recognized for his contributions to the olefin metathesis reaction used in organic chemistry.

Malcolm Leslie Hodder Green was Professor of Inorganic Chemistry at the University of Oxford. He made many contributions to organometallic chemistry.

Corday–Morgan Prize

The Corday–Morgan Medal and Prize is awarded by the Royal Society of Chemistry for the most meritorious contributions to experimental chemistry, including computer simulation. The prize was established by chemist Gilbert Morgan, who named it after his father Thomas Morgan and his mother Mary-Louise Corday. From the award's inception in 1949 until 1980 it was awarded by the Chemical Society. Up to three prizes are awarded annually.

David Leigh (scientist)

David Alan Leigh FRS FRSE FRSC is a British chemist, Royal Society Research Professor and, since 2014, the Sir Samuel Hall Chair of Chemistry in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Manchester. He was previously the Forbes Chair of Organic Chemistry at the University of Edinburgh (2001–2012) and Professor of Synthetic Chemistry at the University of Warwick (1998–2001).

Dame Lynn Faith Gladden is the Shell Professor of Chemical Engineering at the University of Cambridge. She served as Pro-vice-chancellor for research from 2010 to 2016. Since October 2018 she has been executive chair at the EPSRC.

Anthony Cheetham British materials scientist

Sir Anthony Kevin Cheetham is a British materials scientist. From 2012 to 2017 he was Vice-President and Treasurer of the Royal Society.

Guy Charles Lloyd-Jones FRS FRSE is a British chemist. He is the Forbes Professor of Organic Chemistry at the University of Edinburgh in the United Kingdom. His research is largely concerned with the determination of organometallic reaction mechanisms, especially those of palladium-catalyzed coupling reactions such as Suzuki-Miyaura coupling.

Matthew Jonathan Rosseinsky FRS is Professor of Inorganic Chemistry at the University of Liverpool. He was awarded the Hughes Medal in 2011 "for his influential discoveries in the synthetic chemistry of solid state electronic materials and novel microporous structures."

Molly Stevens British academic

Molly Morag Stevens is Professor of Biomedical Materials and regenerative medicine and Research Director for Biomedical Materials Sciences in the Institute of Biomedical Engineering at Imperial College London.

The Perkin Prize for Organic Chemistry is a prestigious award established in 2008 by the Royal Society of Chemistry for sustained originality and achievement in research in any area of organic chemistry.

Hickinbottom Award

The Hickinbottom Award is awarded annually by the Royal Society of Chemistry for contributions in the area of organic chemistry from researchers under the age of 35. The prize winner receives a monetary award and will complete a lecture tour within the UK. The winner is chosen by the awards committee of the Royal Society of Chemistry's organic division.

John F. Hartwig

John F. Hartwig is an organometallic chemist who holds the position of Henry Rapoport Professor of Chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley. His laboratory traditionally focuses on developing transition metal-catalyzed reactions. Hartwig is known for helping develop the Buchwald–Hartwig amination, a chemical reaction used in organic chemistry for the synthesis of carbon–nitrogen bonds via the palladium-catalyzed cross-coupling of amines with aryl halides.

David Parker (chemist)

David Parker is an English chemist and professor at the University of Durham.

Stephen Mann, FRS, FRSC, is Professor of Chemistry, Director of the Centre for Organized Matter Chemistry, Director of the Centre for Protolife Research, and was Principal of the Bristol Centre for Functional Nanomaterials at the University of Bristol, UK.

Susan Elizabeth Gibson is a British research chemist, Professor and Chair in Chemistry and Director of the Graduate School at Imperial College London. Gibson is an expert in chemical synthesis and catalysis.

James Robert Durrant

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Rachel O'Reilly is a British chemist and Professor at the University of Birmingham. She works at the interface of biology and materials, creating polymers that can mimic natural nanomaterials such as viruses and cells. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Rebecca Jane Miriam Goss is a professor of organic chemistry at the University of St. Andrews who won the 2006 Royal Society of Chemistry Meldola Medal. She is known for combining synthetic biology and chemistry for medicinal purposes.

The Longstaff Prize is given to a member of the Royal Society of Chemistry who has done the most to advance the science of chemistry. First awarded in 1881, it was originally conferred by the Chemical Society and known as the Longstaff Medal.


  1. Steven V. Ley at Library of Congress Authorities
  2. 1 2 "LEY, Prof. Steven Victor". Who's Who . 2015 (online ed.). A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc.(subscription or UK public library membership required)(subscription required)
  3. 1 2 3 "Professor Steven Ley CBE FMedSci FRS". London: Royal Society. Archived from the original on 17 November 2015.
  4. 1 2 Ley, Steven Victor (1972). Studies in the chemistry of benzobicyclo systems (PhD thesis). University of Loughborough. OCLC   801311581.
  5. Ley, S. V.; Myers, R. M. (2002). "Sir Derek Harold Richard Barton. 8 September 1918 – 16 March 1998". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 48: 1–23. doi: 10.1098/rsbm.2002.0001 . ISSN   0080-4606.
  7. Video with Steven Ley: "Introducing the Innovative Technology Centre"
  8. Ley, Steven V.; Thomas, Andrew W. (2003). "Modern Synthetic Methods for Copper-Mediated C(aryl)—O, C(aryl)—N, and C(aryl)—S Bond Formation". Angewandte Chemie International Edition. 42 (44): 5400–5449. doi:10.1002/anie.200300594. ISSN   1433-7851. PMID   14618572.
  9. "Professor Steven V. Ley CBE FRS Organic Chemistry Research Group". University of Cambridge. Archived from the original on 27 September 2015.
  10. Steven V. Ley's publications indexed by the Scopus bibliographic database. (subscription required)
  11. "Arthur C. Cope Award: Steven V. Ley". 2018. Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  13. "List of Previous Franco-Brittanique Prize Winners". Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  14. "List of Previous Longstaff Prize Winners". Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  15. "List of Previous Paracelsus Winners". Retrieved 1 January 2020.
  16. "List of Previous Perkin Prize Winners". Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  17. "2009 Tetrahedron Prize for Creativity in Organic Chemistry, Adventures in Organic Chemistry, Steven V Ley". 2010. Retrieved 1 January 2020.
  18. "Director of the Department of Chemistry, University of Cambridge, UK – Heinrich Wieland Prize 2009 for outstanding achievements in the synthesis of key natural products". Retrieved 7 October 2014.
  19. "List of Previous High Throughput Drug Discovery Methodologies Award Winners". Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  20. "List of Previous Prous Institute-Overton and Meyer Award Winners". Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  21. "List of Previous Inhoffen Medal Winners". Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  22. "ACS Award for Creative Work in Synthetic Organic Chemistry". Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  23. "List of Previous Robert Robinson Winners". Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  24. "List of Previous Teamwork in Innovation Award Winners". Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  25. "List of Previous Corday-Morgan Medal Winners". Retrieved 2 January 2020.