Yesterday, Prof. A. M. Echavarren received the prestigious ‘Alder Lecture’ Award during the inauguration session of the 20th European Symposium of Organic Chemistry (ESOC 2017) in Cologne, Germany. This award is given by the University of Cologne and the Kurt Alder Foundation.
Kurt Alder is mainly remembered for co-discovering, together with Otto P. H. Diels, the Diels–Alder reaction, which allows chemists to easily synthesize six-membered cycles. For their contribution to Organic Chemistry they were both awarded the 1950 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Although Alder’s Alma Maters were originally Berlin and then Kiel, he developed most of his professional career in Cologne, where he was full professor and also director of the Institute of Chemistry.
Receiving this prize, Prof. Echavarren joins a list of awardees that includes several Nobel Laureates like Noyori, Grubbs or Corey. After receiving the award, Prof. Echavarren gave a lecture entitled ‘Total Syntheses with a Golden Touch’ explaining his group’s latest advances in the preparation of natural products using gold-catalysed processes.