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The Yusuf Hamied Laboratory for Chemical Synthesis & Catalysis

Image courtesy Nathan Pitt, Department of Chemistry.

Over 90 guests attended the opening ceremony of the Yusuf Hamied Laboratory for Chemical Synthesis & Catalysis on 12 September.

The new state-of-the-art research laboratory, which was made possible by the generous support of Dr Yusuf K Hamied, will enable Professor Matthew Gaunt and his research group to continue their ground breaking research into the invention of catalytic strategies for chemical synthesis.

Professor Gaunt welcomed the guests and recounted the history of the laboratory, which has witnessed the research of many eminent Cambridge professors over the years.  Professor Gaunt reflected that Professor Lord Alexander Todd, the Nobel Prize-winning chemist and former Master of Christ's, would have been happy that the lab is now home to cutting edge synthetic research.  

Dr Hamied spoke about his strong connections with the University and the Department of Chemistry, and how proud he was to be able to support Chemistry at Cambridge.   Dr Hamied is the Chair of the socially conscious pharmaceutical firm Cipla and the recipient of an honorary degree from the University of Cambridge and numerous other awards.  He received his PhD in Chemistry in 1960 under the tutelage of Lord Todd.

Head of Department Professor Daan Frenkel thanked Dr Hamied not only for his support for the new laboratory which bears his name, but also for the many other projects in the Department of Chemistry which he has supported over the years.  Professor Frenkel welcomed the guests, who included Dr Hamied's family, Professor Gaunt's parents, University vice-chancellor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Institutional Affairs and former Head of Department Professor Jeremy Sanders, Head of Department-elect Professor John Pyle, and members and friends of the Gaunt research group and the Department.

The guests were then led to the new laboratory, where (after a brief search for scissors), the ribbon was successfully cut by Professor Gaunt and Dr Hamied.

Dr Yusuf K Hamied and Professor Matthew Gaunt cut the ribbon to open The Yusuf Hamied Laboratory for Chemical Synthesis & Catalysis