A world-class centre for research and teaching in the chemical sciences
Chemistry is a central science that provides an important foundation for multiple scientific disciplines. Chemistry at UWA has a long tradition and outstanding reputation in interdisciplinary research, with activity ranging from chemical biology, catalysis, molecular electronics, reaction dynamics and mechanism, to surface science, molecular materials and nanotechnology, molecular and biomolecular structure determination, and theoretical and computational chemistry.
Our researchers have forged strong connections across academia and industry. We work closely with other schools, research centres and faculties within the University, and have strong links with many universities, research centres and industrial partners across Australia and overseas.
UWA is a world-class centre for research and teaching in the chemical sciences. The Bayliss Building, with embedded industry partners, makes the School of Molecular Science a vibrant, leading research environment and allows us to keep pace with the ever-changing nature of modern science.
Chemistry at UWA has a long tradition and outstanding reputation in interdisciplinary research in areas including:
- Biological chemistry
- Inorganic chemistry
- Materials and nanotechnology
- Molecular structure
- Molecular synthesis and catalysis
- Organic chemistry
- Physical chemistry
- Theory and computation
Key contacts: View the full list of Chemistry staff in our Contact Directory.
Discovering how respiration affects plant development
This research project uses knockout and overexpressing lines of plant specific complex II subunits to characterise their functions.
Secondary metabolite biosynthesis
This UWA research project uses functional genomics to identify gene clusters in the fungal pathogens that may encode secondary metabolites.
Which cellular cues regulate seasonal perception and shoot growth
This project will investigate the convergence of oxygen, redox and energy cues in regulating the cell cycle in plant meristems. Studies can span several domains, from the apical meristem of Arabidopsis or tomato, to the axillary quiescent or dormant buds of perennial species. Approaches will be based on molecular physiology, including use of mutant lines and potentially genetic manipulation.
Protein turnover to measure the role of degradation in the costs of cell function and the acclimation of plants to environments
This research project considers which protein features are responsible for degradation rates and builds evidence for changing protein turnover.
A translational approach to determine how is our immune health under breastfeeding influence
This research project investigates how breastmilk affects our immune health.
Nickel catalysis in natural product synthesis
This UWA research project focuses on the discovery and application of new methods for organic synthetic chemistry and exploiting the reactivity of transition metal complexes.
What are the wheat proteins that define wheat quality, enable disease resistance and tolerate harsh environmental conditions?
This UWA research project will assess metabolic pathway expression in wheat tissues to develop protein markers for industry.
Genome mining of virulent small molecules in human fungal pathogens
Using the synthetic biology platforms available in the lab, this UWA research project uses functional genomics to discover new strategies for novel diagnostics and therapeutics.
Synthetic biology tools for biosynthesis
This UWA research project investigates novel molecules from sequenced fungal genomes for application in medicine and agriculture.
Design and development of novel therapeutics for multidrug resistant bacteria
This project aims to use a molecular structure-guided approach to identify and optimise high potency inhibitors of a key virulence determining enzyme in bacteria for development into a novel antibiotic.
Smoke alarm: Discovering new signalling compounds that operate in plants
The aims of this UWA research project are to investigate diverse sources of biological material for karrikin-like activity using existing bioassays and develop new bioassays, and characterise them with karrikins to determine their performance.
Exploiting chemical signals to boost plant performance
Understanding how plants perceive and respond to changes in their environment is fundamental to improving the performance of crops in the field. This UWA project aims to define the function of the karrikin signalling pathway in plant physiology and establish how it interacts with that of other plant hormones.
Probing the roles bacteria play in infant health
This research project investigates the glycoconjugates found in human milk and the role how these bacteria are beneficial to infant health.
Tackling carbohydrate processing enzymes head on
This research project investigates the role of carbohydrate-processing enzymes implicated in human disease, antibiotic resistance and digestion.
Preparation of reactive metal complexes and their application as catalysts
This UWA research project will develop chiral and non-chiral auxiliary ligand systems for metal-based catalysts used in bond-forming transformations.
Exploiting natural variation to understand molecular evolution
This research project aims to understand the molecular events responsible for the evolution of C4 photosynthesis.
Real time portable genome sequencing for global food security
This research project aims to improve global food security by using real-time genome sequencing to diagnose viruses attacking cassava.
Unique components of human milk
This research project will develop analytical methodologies to analyse components of human milk and advance the accuracy of human milk analysis.
Deciphering chemical signaling processes during plant development
This UWA research project investigates how plants use chemical signals to control their growth and development in response to different environments.
Applications of NanoSIMS analysis on biological studies
This UWA research project will develop imaging techniques using novel methodology and biological applications with the state-of-the-art SIMS lab in UWA.
Discovering the roles for mitochondrial metabolite transporters in plants
This UWA research project analyses mutant plant lines, metabolic analysis of responses and transporter studies to define transport protein function.
Designing functional molecules and materials with supercomputers
This research project uses powerful supercomputers to solve problems of chemical structure and mechanisms and for designing better catalysts, drugs and functional materials.
Understanding how salinity damages wheat and barley crops
This research project will build a more complete picture of global protein expression changes in salt-stressed wheat or barley seedling roots.
Collaborations and research partners
Chemistry at UWA is linked to global research networks, including the Matariki Network of Universities and the Worldwide Universities Network whilst also supporting collaborative programs, exchanges and collaborative research projects with institutions across the world. The impact of our work is elevated by close relationships with industry, philanthropic and consumer partners. In many cases, our industry colleagues are embedded in the Bayliss Building, giving them close access to our cutting-edge facilities and highly-regarded expertise.
Our industry partners include:
School of Molecular Sciences
The School of Molecular Science’s innovative teaching and research applies chemical science to generate practical solutions to real-world problems.
The Bayliss Building is a cutting-edge facility for world-class science research and study.
Biochemistry and molecular genetics
The biochemistry and molecular genetics research group focuses on understanding the molecular basis of life, and the complex molecular processes of living organisms.
Preventing, diagnosing and treating disease
Our wide-ranging research addresses some of the world's most significant health issues, from prevention and diagnosis, to treatment and cure.