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Institute of Organic Chemistry

Sustainable Chemistry with Enzymes


Edmundo Castillo is guest professor at the Institute of Organic Chemistry for one year. At the University of Würzburg he is researching new pharmaceutical applications for natural substances.

Edmundo Castillo is recognized as a world-renowned expert in the design of reaction media for enzymatic reactions in organic synthesis. (Photo: Malte Timm)

Chemistry professor Edmundo Castillo is considered a worldwide recognized expert in the design of reaction media for enzymatic reactions applied to organic synthesis. The scientist from the National Autonomous University of México (UNAM) joined the Institute of Organic Chemistry of the Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg (IOC-JMU) in December 2018. Since then he has been working with Professor Jürgen Seibel with the aim to establish long-term collaborative projects.

New applications through the incorporation of sugar

The work of Castillo at IOC-JMU is focused on the research of efficient chemical and enzymatic strategies for incorporating sugar units to different natural products. The objective is enhancing pharmacokinetic properties of natural products and opening new pharmaceutical applications of these molecules. To achieve this, different chemical tools, which have been developed at IOC-JMU by the research group of Jürgen Seibel, will be incorporated to enzymatic process.

The career of Edmundo Castillo

Edmundo Castillo, born in 1960, is professor of at the National Autonomous University of México since 1998. Since then, Castillo has been working on the Biocatalysis field related to the synthesis of new compounds for food and pharmaceutical industries. Castillo heads the group of „Biocatalysis in non-Conventional Media” at the Institute of Biotechnology of UNAM.

“The Engineering of biocatalysts has been awarded with the Nobel Prize in Chemistry last year. Biocatalysis will play a more important role for the development of products in pharma, feed and food, especially in the context of environmental friendly chemistry in the near future”, says host Jürgen Seibel.

UNAM University

The National Autonomous University of Mexico is a public research university in Mexico. It ranks highly in world rankings based on the university's extensive research and innovation. The UNAM offers academic sabbatical fellowships to its professors, enabling them to look for new research lines and cooperation projects with research institutions in Germany that work in complementary areas of knowledge. With 346.730 students, 36.750 academic staff and an endowment of US$ 2.4 billion UNAM is among the largest universities worldwide.


Dr. Edmundo Castillo, Institute of Organic Chemistry, phone: +49 931 31-88032,