COSAM » COSAM Faculty » Chemistry and Biochemistry » Anne Gorden

Anne E. V. Gorden
Chemistry and Biochemistry
Associate Professor

Research Areas: Inorganic , Organic

Office: 261 Chemistry Building

179 Chemistry Building
Auburn, AL 36849

Phone: (334) 844-6973
Fax: (334) 844-6959

Curriculum vitae

Research Page


Emory University, B. S.,Chemistry and Literature
The University of Texas at Austin, Ph. D., Organic Chemistry
The University of California at Berkeley, Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Seaborg Center Postdoctoral Fellow

Professional Employment

Associate Chair, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Auburn University
2014- present
Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Auburn University
2011- present
Assistant Professor, Department Chemistry and Biochemistry, Auburn University
2005- 2011
Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab
2003- 2005
Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of California
2002- 2003

Honors and Awards

Auburn University Provost’s Award for Fostering Undergraduate Research and Creative Scholarship
Auburn University College of Sciences and Mathematics Faculty Advisor of the Year
Auburn University Women of Distinction Faculty Award
Delta Gamma Foundation Faculty Award for Teaching Excellence
Auburn University Society for Women in Science and Mathematics Faculty Mentoring Award
Oakridge Affiliated Universities Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Award
The Lawrence Berkeley National Lab Seaborg Center Postdoctoral Fellow

Professional Activities

American Chemical Society, 1994- present
American Chemical Society Auburn Local Section - Executive Committee, Chair Elect 2017
National Academy of Inventors, 2014- present
AWIS, Association of Women in Science, 2006- present
Iota Sigma Pi, Honor Society for Women in Chemistry, 1998- present

Research and Teaching Interests

The overall research goal of the Gorden Research Group is to develop broad-ranging, state-of-the-art programs based on combining organic synthesis and inorganic metal coordination chemistry, and to apply this both fundamental chemistry and practical applications.

 Actinide Specific Metal Detection - The use of actinides for energy or military applications has resulted in a host of waste and contamination issues. A need exists for new materials that can coordinate, sense, manipulate, to decontaminate sites or for sensors, “sensing” polymers, sprays, or pastes to detect and isolate toxic metals. Chemosensors such as these will allow for rapid in the field visual identification and thus increase ease of decontamination. We have developed ligands incorporating a quinoxaline into a salen backbone. The addition of a quinoxaline to the salen imparts the fluorescence to the quinoxaline and alters the coordination site. We have used these complexes to probe the contributing factors toward selectivity, signal intensity, and the differentiation between actinides (like uranium and thorium) and transition metals (like copper or cobalt). Differences in their spectroscopic signature is characteristic enough to discriminate between uranyl and transition metals. Additional experiments will continue to quantify this selectivity. 

 Improving Actinide Separations and Extractions - Contained within nuclear fuel wastes are valuable, reusable materials including uranium and plutonium that can be recycled. Various ligand systems have been proposed for the selective coordination of actinides; however, their use in applications is often limited by low signal response, sensitivity to pH, competition from other metals, or they are not proliferation resistant methods. The focus of this project is the synthesis and characterization of coordination complexes featuring soft-donor atoms (i.e., nitrogen and sulfur) for extraction agents that can differentiate between metals. We will use these to prepare metal complexes with uranium and then transuranic metals to test for selectivity, and thus learn about the fundamental chemistry like hard-soft interactions, selectivity, and reactivity, to allow us to improve separations methods.

Homogeneous Catalysis Based on Cu(II) or Mn(II) with Heterocyclic Ligand Supports - In “Green” chemistry we are seeking to use more environmentally-friendly or less-toxic chemicals, to eliminate purification steps, and to use catalytic rather than stoichiometric reactions methods, in the hopes of reducing wastes. The objective of this program is to develop ligand supported metal catalysts using quinoxolinol salens and copper or manganese. We have been able to use a quinoxolinol salen (salqu) copper complex in the oxidation of aryl methylenes in up to 99% yields while reducing the energy required because of increased solubility and better stabilization of the intermediates. We have investigated selective allyic oxidation in steroids, and are now investigating other allylic oxidations, the reaction mechanism, and electrochemistry.

Selected Publications

(See the Research Group Webpage for a full list of Publications)

SELECTED PUBLICATIONS: Of ~48 scientific peer-reviewed articles, >60 invited talks, >100 contributed scientific conference presentations

  1. Black, C. C.; Gorden, Anne E.V. “Propargylic C-H activation using a Cu(II) 2-quinoxalinol salen catalyst and tert-butyl hydroperoxide,”  Tetrahedron Letters 2018, 803-806.(DOI:10.1016/j.tetlet.2018.01.030)
  2. Hardy, E. E.; Wyss, K.M.; Keller, R.J.; Gorden, John D.; Gorden, Anne E.V. “Tunable Emission of Napthylsalophen Triple-Decker Dinuclear Lanthanide (III) Sandwich Complexes,” Dalton Transactions 2018, 1337 – 1346. (DOI:10.1039/C7DT03733C).
  3. Hardy, E. E.; Wyss, K.M.; Gorden, John D.; Ariyarathna, Isuru R.; Miliordos,  Evangelos;  Gorden, Anne E.V. "Th(IV) and Ce(IV) Napthylsalophen Sandwich Complexes: Characterization of Unusual Thorium Fluorescence in Solution and Solid-state" Chemical Communications 2017 53, 11984-11987. (DOI: 10.1039/C7CC06868A) *Selected for a Front Cover Feature
  4. Niklas, J. E.; Farnum, B.D.; Gorden, John D.; Gorden, Anne E.V. “Structural Characterization and Redox Activity of a Uranyl Dimer and Transition Metal Complexes of a Tetradentate BIAN Ligand,” Organometallics 2017, 4626–4634. (DOI: 10.1021/acs.organomet.7b00454)                             

Last updated: 10/05/2018