2024 Melville L. Wolfrom Award Winner – Professor Alexei Demchenko



Professor Alexei Demchenko, in the Department of Chemistry at Saint Louis University and the Immediate Past Chair of the ACS CARB Division, has received the 2024 Melville L. Wolfrom award for outstanding service to CARB and the field of carbohydrate chemistry.

Professor Demchenko was born (1965), raised, and educated in Moscow, Russia. He graduated from the Mendeleev University of Chemical Technology of Russia with a Diploma (M.S.) in Chemical Engineering (1988) before joining the laboratory of the late Professor Kochetkov at the Zelinsky Institute of Organic Chemistry in Moscow. In 1993, he was awarded a Ph.D. in organic chemistry by the Russian Academy of Sciences for his work on the development of thiocyanate methodology for glycosylation. After two post-doctoral years under Kochetkov, he joined Professor Boons’ group at the University of Birmingham (UK) as a BBSRC post-doctoral research fellow. In 1998, he moved to the Complex Carbohydrate Research Center, University of Georgia (USA) as a research associate. In 2001, he joined the faculty at the University of Missouri – St. Louis (UMSL) as an Assistant Professor where he was promoted to the rank of Associate Professor with tenure (2007) and Professor (2011). In 2014, Demchenko was appointed Curators’ Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry.

In 2021, Demchenko joined the faculty at Saint Louis University as Professor and Department Chair.

Professor Demchenko has co-authored 225 articles (Scopus H-index 47, Scholar H-index 51) and has given 170 invited lectures and seminars in the U.S. and abroad. His research interests are in the area of synthetic carbohydrate chemistry that include: streamlined synthesis of carbohydrate building blocks; novel glycosylation reactions; methods for stereocontrolling the glycosidic bond formation; strategies for expeditious assembly of complex glycans and glycoconjugates; synthetic vaccines and glycopharmaceuticals; human milk oligosaccharides and other food additives and ingredients; solid phase and automated synthesis; modification and conjugation of glycans to protein carriers, surfaces, and nanoparticles. His research program has been funded by grants from a variety of sources totaling $11M. Professor Demchenko has served in many editorial roles and organized several international conferences including the 2015 Gordon Research Conference on Carbohydrates. From 2019, he has served as President of the U.S. Advisory Committee for the International Carbohydrate Symposia. Professor Demchenko was the 2020-2021 Chair of the Division of Carbohydrate Chemistry of the American Chemical Society. Demchenko is the National Representative of the USA for the International Carbohydrate Organization.

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