Dr Derek Macmillan (RSURF)

Organic Chemistry and Chemical Biology

Dr Derek Macmillan

Address: Department of Chemistry, UCL
Phone No: +44 (0)20 7679 4684
Fax No: +44 (0)20 7679 7463
Extension: 24684
Photo of Derek Macmillan

Research areas of interest include:

  • Organic Synthesis
  • Carbohydrate and glycopeptide chemistry
  • Peptide and protein synthesis
  • Engineering and directed evolution of proteins 


Derek Macmillan Research Image

The Macmillan group is engaged in the semi-synthesis of modified proteins. Protein synthesis and semi synthesis will be important in unravelling the mechanisms of action of processes involving post-translationally modified (glycosylated, phosphorylated) proteins. This endeavour involves synthetic organic chemistry, molecular biology, protein expression and protein engineering. Other projects include glycosyltransferase engineering, antimicrobial peptide synthesis, and synthesis and utility of transition metal complexes.

Research Profile

Selected Publications

  1. 1. Kang, J.; Macmillan D. Protein thioester synthesis via an N→S acyl shift. Org. Biomol. Chem. 2010, 8, 1993-2002.
  2. Virdee, S.; Macmillan, D.; Waksman, G. Semisynthetic Src SH2 Domains Demonstrate Altered Phosphopeptide Specifity by Incorporation of Unnatural Amino Acids. Chem. Biol. 2010, 17, 274-284.
  3. Kang, J.; Reynolds, N.L.; Tyrrell, C.; Dorin, J.R.; and Macmillan, D. Peptide thioester synthesis through N-S acyl-transfer: Application to the synthesis of a β-Defensin. Org. Biomol. Chem. 2009, 7, 4918-4923.
  4. Hirano, K.; Macmillan, D.; Tezuka, K.; Tsuji, T.; Kajihara, Y. Design and synthesis of a homogeneous erythropoietin analogue having two human complex type sialyloligosaccharides by combined use of chemical and bacterial protein expression methods.Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2009, 48, 9557-9560.
  5. Kang, J.; Richardson, J.P.; Macmillan, D. 3-Mercaptopropionic acid-mediated synthesis of peptide and protein thioesters, Chem. Commun. 2009 (4), 407-409.

All Publications

  • 1991-95 BSc (Hons) Environmental Chemistry, University of Edinburgh
  • 1995-99 PhD Bio-organic Chemistry, University of Edinburgh , Prof S L Flitsch
  • 1999-2001 Post-doc Bio-organic Chemistry, UC Berkeley, Prof C R Bertozzi
  • 2005 Visiting Research Fellow, Caltech, Pasadena , USA , Prof. F H Arnold
  • 2003 - Royal Society University Research Fellow University College London