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Volume 60, No. 6 September, 2009

In this issue

go to St Louis Award 2009: Dr Chris Spilling
go to Picnic Take 5
go to National Chemistry Week preview
go to Brain Buster puzzle
go to YCC Career Night info
go to Meetings and Seminars
go to Need Event Reminders?
go to About the Chemical Bond

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next contents  St Louis Award, 2009
Dr Christopher D Spilling, University of Missouri–St Louis

Dr Christopher D Spilling came to St Louis in August 1989 to join the faculty of the Chemistry Department at the University of Missouri–St Louis as Assistant Professor. Prior to that he spent three years as a postdoctoral fellow at Northwestern University with Professor Tony Barrett. At UM–St Louis, he was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure in 1996 and in 2001 to Full Professor. During the 1996-97 academic year he was a visiting scholar with Professor Steven V Ley at Cambridge University. Chris was the obvious choice for department chair in 2004 when the former chair, Gordon Anderson, left the University.

Dr Chris Spilling

Dr Christopher Spilling

An Englishman, he was born in Norwich, East Anglia, and was educated at the University of Loughborough, where he received a BSc degree in chemistry in 1983 and a PhD degree in organic chemistry under the direction of Brian Marples in 1986.

At UM–St Louis, he developed a very productive, high quality research program. He has published about 70 articles, four patents, several chapters, reviews, etc. He has garnered substantial external funding for his research, both from granting agencies and industry, for the support of his graduate students and postdoctoral research associates. He has also presented his work many times at meetings and conferences and has given about 60 invited lectures at other universities. In 1991, the graduate students voted him the best teacher in the chemistry department. Chris has also been an active and contributing participant in the affairs of the St Louis Section of the American Chemical Society. He served as ACS Student Affiliates advisor in his early years at UM–St Louis and since 1994, he has served as the St Louis Section representative to the ACS Midwest Regional Steering Committee. He chaired the 2000 Midwest Regional Meeting in St Louis, a very successful one, and perhaps an important reason the St Louis Section won the Award for Outstanding Performance by a Large Section the following year.

Early in his career he developed a research program that had three foci: the use of phosphorus reagents for asymmetric synthesis, the chemistry of glucal halohydrins and the total synthesis of marine sponge metabolites. More recently his work has taken a more biological bent as the world-wide emphasis in organic chemistry moves in that direction. He and his students are now using their phosphorus chemistry to prepare biologically active molecules and testing them on cell lines and enzymes.

A relatively recent development in his research activity is in entrepreneurship. He has on several occasions consulted with local firms, but recently he and some colleagues founded the company Alkymos in order to fund some collaborative research. A consequence of that is that the University of Missouri System-Wide Faculty Entrepreneur of the Year Award for 2009 went to Professors Wes Harris and Chris Spilling for their work on removal of aluminum from infant feeding solutions. The award was established to honor a University of Missouri faculty member for a record of entrepreneurial innovation that demonstrates commercial utility, contributes to the public welfare, and brings visibility to the University of Missouri.

Chris lives in Bel-Nor with his wife Kathy and three sons: Andrew, Robert, and William. He still plays soccer and racquetball and enjoys a beer on Friday evenings with his colleagues.

The St Louis Award Symposium will be held on October 16, and the Banquet on October 17. Check the website and the October Bond for up-to-the-minute information.

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next previous contents Picnic Take 5

Conversational wrap-up

Conversation moved out into the dappled sunlight after the eating phase was over

The 5th Annual St Louis ACS Section picnic was held in Tilles Park on June 6, 2009—a new location after the Tower Grove Park venue of the previous four picnics. The Skow Shelter was a fine spot, with plenty of shade, picnic benches, and nearby restrooms. The weather was good this year (for a change), and the turnout was a respectable 26 adults and several children, from infant to ... no longer children. There were members of the Younger Chemists Committee, old-time Board members, spouses and guests, and some for whom this was the first section event they had ever attended.

The section served up a barbeque of bratwursts, hot dogs, burgers, and chicken—plenty for everyone—and lots of beverages, chips, and cookies to go along with it. Past-Chair Keith Stine was the grill ninja. Sheryl Loux brought a game of Kubb (a Swedish game, rhymes with rube). Kubb teams were so captivated with the competition that they almost forgot to eat. Sheryl also helped avert disaster by running out for charcoal lighter fluid we desperately needed to get off the ground. You would think a bunch of chemists could come up with better ways to light charcoal, but no one had any pyrophorics with them. Later in the afternoon, Frisbees appeared to help people work off their indulgence before we cleaned up and headed home.

Grill Ninja

Grill ninja Keith Stine looks on from a safe distance as the charcoal lighter fluid works its chemical magic

Sheryl Loux at Kubb

Tempting to caption this, “Sheryl Loux after the winning toss in Kubb finals,” but it’s obvious the king remains standing, just to the left of Arindam Roy’s right hip

Eric Bruton's Kubb toss

Eric Bruton’s baton toss during the grueling Kubb finals

Food and conversation

Part of the larger group of picnickers eating and chatting under the Skow shelter

Jr chemist at picnic

Future chemist works on his Frisbee skills

next previous contents “Chemistry—It’s Elemental”

NCW logo

... is this year’s theme for National Chemistry Week, October 18-24, 2009, and it is time to start planning how you are going to celebrate it along with other ACS members around the country. As this is the 140th year of the Periodic Table developed by Dmitri Mendeleev, we are planning activities that will commemorate both events ... possibly a human Periodic Table?

As part of the 20th National Chemistry Week, we will be holding our annual Industry Expo at the Science Center on October 24 from 10 am to 4 pm. So break out your Periodic Table tie and anything else that is elemental to you, and join the fun. This is our best public outreach event of the year—your opportunity to let others know you are a chemist and how chemistry affects all of our everyday lives.

For holding an event, to reserve your spot as an Academic or Industrial participant in the Industry Expo, or just to volunteer, contact Greg Wall at 314.435.6487 or gwall37@msn.com. After all, It’s Elemental!

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next previous contents Brain Buster

Encrypted below is a chemical compound that is essential to all life. Find the chemical in


Answer to be found in the next Chemical Bond. Or, if you just can’t wait, send $50 and an autographed rookie Stan Musial baseball card to:

“I Just Can’t Wait” Teaser
P.O. Box 6.02E23
Isocyanide, NC

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next previous contents Younger Chemists Committee Career Night

YCC logo

Thursday, September 17, 2009
6:00–8:00 pm
Sigma-Aldrich Corporation
2909 Laclede Avenue
St Louis, MO 63103

Event includes

Expert Panel

The Younger Chemists Committee of Saint Louis (YCC STL) and the Saint Louis Section of the American Chemical Society cordially invite you to attend Chemistry Career Night. Please RSVP to Dayna Turner at turner.dayna@gmail.com by September 7th, 2009. On-site parking will be available free of charge for attendees.

We hope you will be able to participate in this unique opportunity to explore possible careers in chemistry.

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next previous contents  Meetings & Seminars

Board of Directors

St Louis Section–ACS Board of Directors meets the second Thursday of each month, usually at the Glen Echo Country Club (map available on website). Meetings are open to all members, and all are encouraged to attend. Elected officers and chairs of major committees vote on questions put to the Board; others in attendance have voice but no vote.

If you want to attend for dinner, please contact Bill Doub (william.doub@fda.hhs.gov or 314.651.7514) at least a week in advance. Usual cost of the dinner is $20. Members wishing to become active in section activities are welcomed for their first dinner as guests of the section.

Date: Sep 10
Social hour: 5:30 pm
Dinner: 6:30 pm
Business meeting: 7:15 pm
Future Meetings: Oct 8, Nov 12

Saint Louis University

Seminars start at 4 pm in Room 12 Monsanto Hall, except as noted. For more information, contact the Chemistry Department, 314-977-2850. All topics are TBA.

August 28
Dr Michael Lewis
Saint Louis University

September 4
Dr Brent Znosko
Saint Louis University

September 11
Dr John Pojman
Louisiana State University

September 18
Dr Svetlana M. Mitrovski
Eastern Illinois University

September 25
Dr Punit Kohli
So. Illinois University–Carbondale

University of Missouri–St Louis

Fridays at 4 pm in 451 Benton Hall, unless otherwise specified. Refreshments 15 minutes prior to seminar time. For more information, contact the Chemistry Department, 314.516.5311.

August 31
Michael Nichols
University of Missouri–St Louis
Amyloid-β and the Innate Immune Response

September 14
Stephen Holmes
University of Missouri–St Louis
Systematic Approaches for Engineering Molecule-Based Magnetic and Photo-responsive Materials

September 21
Zhi Xu
University of Missouri–St Louis
Development of Non-invasive Blood Glucose Detector for Better Diabetes Control

Washington University

Seminars are in McMillen 311 at 4 pm unless otherwise noted. For information, contact Lev Gelb, gelb@wustl.edu.

August 27
Erick D Ellis
Jackson State University

Special Interest Group Meeting

Our speaker is a PhD chemist and a patent attorney. She helps her clients procure patent rights in the U.S. and around the world and supports her clients’ capital acquisition and due diligence activities.

September 24, 6:30 pm
Dr Janet Hendrickson
Senniger Powers Law Firm
Patent Primer: What an Inventor Needs to Know About Patent Law

The meeting is in the Gast Conference Room of the Weidenbaum Center (Seigle Bldg) on the main Washington University campus.

YCC Career Night

The Younger Chemists Committee invites you to this evening of career advice, discussion, and networking. See announcement above for full details.

September 17, 6–8 pm
Expert panel from

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next previous contents Need event reminders?

string tied around finger

Would you like an email reminder of upcoming ACS events and activities? Join the ACS reminders listserv. Email Alexa Serfis at barnoski@slu.edu and ask to be put on the list. You can also add or remove yourself at the website, stlacs.org, and click on Event reminders—subscribe or Event reminders—unsubscribe. Subscription comes with a money-back no-spam guarantee.

previous contents About the Chemical Bond

The Chemical Bond is published at www.stlacs.org January through May and September through December by the St Louis Section–American Chemical Society. If you would like to receive email notification when each issue is posted, please send your request to editor@stlacs.org with “Bond subscribe” in the subject line. You can cancel reminders by sending email with “Bond unsubscribe” in the subject line.

Interim Editor Eric Ressner 314.962.6415
Assistant Editor/Adv Mgr Sue Saum 314.513.4808
Business Mgr Donna Friedman 314.513.4388

Correspondence, letters to the editor, etc., should be sent to:
editor@stlacs.org or ℅ St Louis Section–ACS, 125 West Argonne, St Louis, MO 63122

Copyright © 2009 American Chemical Society and the St Louis Section–ACS