Michael A. Kerr


Contact Information

Title: Professor
Office: Rm 219 ChB,
Labs: 211, 213, 217, & 218 ChB
Phone (Office): ext 86354
Phone (Lab): ext 86335
E-mail: makerr@uwo.ca

Organic Teaching Division

Synthesis, Catalysis and Molecular Materials

Chemical Synthesis

Group Website


B.Sc. (Waterloo); Ph.D. (University of Hawaii at Manoa)


  • Alfred Bader Award (Awarded by the Chemical Institute of Canada) (2015)
  • Western Faculty of Science Award for Excellence in Graduate Student Mentoring (2014)
  • Boeringer Ingelheim Lectureship, UQAM (2012)
  • Faculty Scholar Award (2008-2010)
  • Annormed Named Lectureship (2007)
  • Occupational Health and Safety Award for Membership on University HazMat Team (2004)
  • Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching (Nominee) (2004-2005)
  • Premier's Research Excellence Award (2001)
  • Synlett Editor's Award for Outstanding Faculty (1999)


In my research group we are engaged in the development of new synthetic methods which will be of interest to the chemical community and the application of these methods to the synthesis of natural and unnatural products of biological and medicinal interest. We have gained expertise in 1) the use of ultra-high pressures to promote useful chemical reactions, 2) the Diels-Alder reactions of unusual dienophiles, 3) the synthesis and chemical reactivity of heterocyclic systems, particularly indoles, 4) the chemical synthesis of complex target molecules, particularly alkaloids, 5) the use of donor/acceptor cyclopropanes in organic synthesis and 6) the development of new cycloadditions.


  • 2283 - Organic Chemistry II: Mechanisms and Reactivity
  • 3330 - Industrial Chemistry
  • 3373 - Organic Chemistry III: Reactions and Strategies for Synthesis
  • 4473 - Modern Chemical Synthesis
  • 9563 - Total Synthesis
  • 9623 - Advanced Synthetic Methods
  • 9723 - Advanced Synthetic Methods II
  • 9823 - Heterocycles