School of Molecular Sciences

In 2015, the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Arizona State University became the School of Molecular Sciences to recognize the fact that modern chemical science now has profound impact well beyond the traditional disciplinary boundaries of chemistry and biochemistry.  

Innovation in Research and Education

Pioneering Researcher

From 2000 to 2010, Michael O’Keefe was the world's third most cited chemist. With ASU colleagues he generated the first pictures of atomic orbitals and invented metal-organic framework structures (MOFs).

Structural Revolution

Petra Fromme's group was part of the team that generated the first crystal structure of a protein using femtosecond X-ray nanocrystallography, a tool that promises to revolutionize structural biology.

Access and Opportunity

The School of Molecular Sciences hosts the nation's only online chemistry and biochemistry degrees, with innovative hands-on lab courses that meet the needs of students otherwise excluded from a college education.

Extraterrestrial Amino Acids

Carleton Moore led ASU’s early studies of the Murchison meteorite that resulted in the first isolation of extraterrestrial amino acids, demonstrating the unambiguous presence of complex organic compounds outside of Earth.

Sunlight Makes ATP

Devens Gust, Tom Moore and Ana Moore developed the first biomimetic, light-powered artificial photosynthetic system capable of using light energy to synthesize ATP, the molecule that powers life.

Proteins Are Conductors

Stuart Lindsay made the first measurements that demonstrated conductivity in proteins, usually considered to be insulators, by optimizing the molecular structure of the electrical contacts.

Recent Faculty Awards

Michael O'Keeffe-2019
Aminoff Prize

Peter Buseck-2019
Roebling Medal 

C. Austen Angell-2019
Gothenburg Lise Meitner Award 

Everett Shock-2019
ACS Geochemistry Medal  

Junior Faculty Recognition

  • 6 NSF CAREER Awards
     
  • 2 NIH New Innovator Awards
     
  • Air Force Young Investigator Award
     
  • Sloan Foundation Research Fellowship
     
  • DARPA Young Faculty Award
     
  • DOE Career Award

New Faculty

Laura Ackerman
Sustainable synthesis and catalysis 

Kyle Biegasiewicz
Organic synthesis and biocatalysis 

Christina Birkel
Non-conventional materials synthesis 

Audrone Lapinaite
Function-mechanism of modified RNA

Judith Klein-Seetharamane
Discovery for Personalized Diagnosis

Hongwu Xu
Materials

Teaching for Inclusion

ASU’s online chemistry and biochemistry degree programs are designed to provide diverse and underrepresented student populations access to a college education.

64%
Female
28
Average age
400%
Increase in Black Students*
600%
Increase in military/veteran students*

*compared to the on-ground population

Research with Impact

60+

Patents filed
science 2015

20M+

Annual
research expenditures
top10
in publications in Science and Nature
since 2000*
#6
in high-impact publications in
chemistry**

*Source: Web of Science
**Thomson Reuters 2011 Journal Citation Reports(JCR)