Source: Interfolio F180

Keary Engle

Dean of Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies
Department of Chemistry


Research Focus

Organic small molecules make up the vast majority of medicines, biological probes, agrochemicals, and materials building blocks. Thus, though they are ubiquitous in modern society, many classes of small molecules remain problematic to prepare using conventional methods. Contemporary synthetic routes routinely require multiple steps, generate large quantities of waste, or require substantial human energy to troubleshoot. Research in the Engle group focuses on addressing these challenges by harnessing the power of catalysis. Our group's goal is to advance the efficiency, effectiveness, and sustainability of chemical synthesis. The projects that we tackle are highly interdisciplinary, and as a consequence, students complement their core training in synthetic organic, physical organic, and organometallic chemistry with expertise in related disciplines in and outside of chemistry.


D.Phil. (Biochemistry), University of Oxford, 2013
Ph.D. (Chemistry), The Scripps Research Institute, 2013
B.S. (Chemistry, Economics, Mathematics, and Statistics), University of Michigan, 2007

Professional Experience

2013-2015 NIH Postdoctoral Research Fellow, California Institute of Technology
2007-2008 Fulbright Fellow, Max-Planck-Institut für Kohlenforschung
2008-2015 Graduate Student, Scripps Research Institute
2015-2020 Assistant Professor, Scripps Research Institute
2020-Present Professor, Scripps Research Institute
2024-Present Dean of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies, Scripps Research Institute

Awards & Professional Activities

2021 Amgen Young Investigator Award
2021 Emerging Investigator Lectureship, ChemComm
2021 NSF CAREER Award
ONR Young Investigator Award
2020 Eli Lilly Organic Chemistry Award 
2020 Cottrell Scholar Award
2020 Novartis Early Career Award in Organic Chemistry
2019 Alfred P. Sloan Fellowship
2019 Boehringer Ingelheim Scientific Advancement Grant
2019 Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award
2018 ACS Petroleum Research Fund Doctoral New Investigator Grant
Bristol-Myers Squibb Unrestricted Grant
2018 Bayer Early Excellence in Science Award
2017 TSRI Society of Fellows Outstanding Mentor
2017 Thieme Chemistry Journal Award
2016 Donald E. and Delia B. Baxter Foundation Young Faculty Award
2014 IUPAC-Solvay International Award for Young Chemists
2013 Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NIH F32)
2012 Kenneth G. Hancock Memorial Student Award, ACS Green Chemistry Institute
2011 K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders Award, American Association of Colleges and Universities
2008 Skaggs-Oxford Scholarship, Scripps Research Institute and Oxford University
2008 NSF Graduate Research Fellowship, National Science Foundation
2008 National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship, ASEE
2007 J. William Fulbright Scholarship, International Institute of Education

Selected Publications

O'Duill, M. L.; Matsuura, Rei; Wang, Y.; Turnbull, J. L.; Gurak, John A.; Gao, D. W.; Lu, G.; Liu, P.; Engle, Keary M. Tridentate directing groups stabilize 6-membered palladacycles in catalytic alkene hydrofunctionalization. Journal of the American Chemical Society 2017, 139, 15576-15579.

Gurak, John A.; Engle, Keary M. Regioselective hydroamination using a directed nucleopalladation/protodepalladation strategy. Synlett 2017, 28, 2057-2065.

Liu, Zhen; Wang, Y.; Wang, Z.; Zeng, T.; Liu, P.; Engle, Keary M. Catalytic intermolecular carboamination of unactivated alkenes via directed aminopalladation. Journal of the American Chemical Society 2017, 139, 11261-11270.

Derosa, Joseph; Tran, Van T.; Boulous, M. N.; Chen, Jason S.; Engle, Keary M. Nickel-catalyzed ß,?-dicarbofunctionalization of alkenyl carbonyl compounds via conjunctive cross-coupling. Journal of the American Chemical Society 2017, 139, 10657-10660.

Gurak, John A.; Tran, Van T.; Sroda, M. M.; Engle, Keary M. N-alkylation of 2-pyridone derivatives via palladium(II)-catalyzed directed alkene hydroamination. Tetrahedron 2017, 73, 3636-3642.

Derosa, Joseph; Cantu, A. L.; Boulous, M. N.; O'Duill, M. L.; Turnbull, J. L.; Liu, Zhen; De La Torre, D. M.; Engle, Keary M. Palladium(II)-catalyzed directed anti-hydrochlorination of unactivated alkynes with HCl. Journal of the American Chemical Society 2017, 139, 5183-5193.