Professor LU Yixin

(Vice Dean - Graduate Studies and Safety)

B.Sc., Fudan University, M.Sc., Dalian University of Technology, Ph.D., McGill University, Postdoctoral Fellow, Clinical Research Institute of Montreal; Nagoya University

Contact Information

Office: S5-03-08
Tel: (65)-6516-1569 | Fax: (65)-6779-1691
Email: | Personal webpage


ORCID: 0000-0002-5730-166X

ResearcherID: E-6956-2017


Recognition and Achievements

  • Editorial Advisory Board Member, Accounts of Chemical Research
  • NRF Investigatorship Award 2018
  • Asian Core Program Lectureship Award to Japan, Korean, China & Taiwan, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2014 & 2016
  • Dean’s Chair Professorship, 2013
  • GSK-SNIC Award in Organic Chemistry, 2013
  • Outstanding Scientist Award & Young Scientist Award, Faculty of Science, NUS, 2009 & 2013
  • Outstanding Chemist Award & Young Chemist Award, Department of Chemistry, NUS, 2010, 2011


Research Interests

Main areas of study are asymmetric organocatalysis//medicinal chemistry. Specific foci include organocatalytic asymmetric reactions & development of anti-cancer/analgesics agents.


Research Highlight

Ref: Chan, W.-L.; Tang, X.; Zhang, F.; Wuek, G.; Mei, G.-J.; Lu, Y., Phosphine-Catalyzed (3+2) Annulation of Isoindigos with Allenes: Enantioselective Formation of Two Vicinal Quaternary Stereogenic Centers. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2019, 58, 6260 (a VIP paper). Construction of contiguous all-carbon quaternary stereogenic centers is a long-standing daunting challenge in synthetic organic chemistry. In this report, we introduce a phosphine-catalyzed enantioselective (3+2) annulation reaction between allenes and isoindigos containing two identical/different oxindole moieties as a powerful strategy for the construction of spirocyclic bisindoline alkaloid core structures. The reported reactions are featured with high chemical yields, excellent enantioselectivities, and very good regioselectivities, and are highly useful for creating structurally challenging bisindoline natural products.

Representative Publications 

  • • Bai, X.; Wu, C.; Ge, S.; Lu, Y. Pd/Cu-Catalyzed Enantioselective Sequential Heck-Sonogashira Coupling: Asymmetric Synthesis of Oxindoles Containing Trifluoromethylated Quaternary Stereogenic Centers Centers, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed., 2019, DOI: 10.1002/anie.201913148.
  • Mei, G.-J.; Tang, X.; Tasdan, Y.; Lu, Y., Enantioselective Dearomatization of Indoles via an Azoalkene-enabled (3+2) Reaction: Facile Access to Pyrroloindolines. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2019, 58, xxxx.
  • Wu, M.; Han, Z.; Li, K.; Wu, J.; Ding, K. Lu, Y., Cyclohexyl-Fused, Spirobiindane-derived, Phosphine-catalyzed Synthesis of Tricyclic γ-Lactams and Kinetic Resolution of γ-Substituted Allenoates. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2019, 141, 16362.
  • Chan, W.-L.; Tang, X.; Zhang, F.; Quek, G.; Mei, G.-J.; Lu, Y. Phosphine-Catalyzed (3+2) Annulation of Isoindigos with Allenes: Enantioselective Formation of Two Vicinal Quaternary Stereogenic Centers. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2019, 58, 6260.
  • Li, K.; Gonçalves, T. P.; Huang, K.-W.; Lu, Y. Dearomatization of 3-Nitroindoles by a Phosphine-catalyzed Enantioselective [3+2] Annulation Reaction. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2019, 58, 5427.
  • Ni, H.; Chan, W.-L.; Lu, Y. Phosphine-catalyzed Asymmetric Organic Reactions. Chem. Rev. 2018, 118, 9344.
  • Ni, H.; Tang, X.; Zheng, W.; Yao, W.; Ullah, N.; Lu, Y. Enantioselective Phosphine-Catalyzed Formal [4+4] Annulation of α,β-Unsaturated Imines and Allene Ketones: Construction of Eight-membered Rings. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2017, 56, 14222.
  • Yao, W.; Dou, X.; Wen, S.; Wu, J.; Lu, Y. Enantioselective Desymmetrization of Cyclohexadienones via an Intramolecular Rauhut–Currier Reaction of Allenoates. Nat. Commun. 2016, 7, 13024.
  • Wang, T.; Han, X.; Zhong, F.; Yao, W.; Lu, Y. Amino Acid-derived Bifunctional Phosphines for Enantioselective Transformations. Acc. Chem. Res. 2016, 49, 1369.
  • Han, X.; Chan, W.-L.; Yao, W., Wang, Y.; Lu, Y. Phosphine-Mediated Highly Enantioselective Spirocyclization with Ketimines as Substrates. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2016, 55, 6492.
  • Dou, X.; Lu, Y.; Hayashi, T. Base Free Conditions for Rhodium-Catalyzed Asymmetric Arylation to Produce Stereochemically Labile α-Aryl Ketones. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2016, 55, 6739.