Academic Leader: Research

Person Rajshekhar Karpoormath  
Designation  Associate Professor
Discipline  Pharmaceutical Sciences


 +27(0) 31 260 7179/7758
 Personal Assistant/Secretary  
Campus Westville Campus
Research Interests ·         Target-based drug design and synthesis

·         Organic Synthesis: Methodology

·         Biosensors/electrochemical sensors




Prof Rajshekhar Karpoormath completed his B.Pharm and M. Pharm from Karnataka University and Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences, India respectively. He then obtained his PhD in Organic Chemistry (2013) from University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN).  In 2010 he joined UKZN as a lecturer and currently Associate Professor in Pharmaceutical Chemistry. He is also Academic Leader of Research in College of Health Sciences, UKZN and a National Research Foundation-South Africa (NRF-SA) – Rated researcher.

Prof Karpoormath started his independent research group (Synthetic and Medicinal Chemistry Research Group) in 2014. Over the years he has successfully secured several national and institutional grants worth over 6.5 million Rand (500,000 USD). These funds were utilized in establishing a well-equipped Drug Discovery Laboratory at UKZN and a productive research collaboration with national and international Universities as well as research institutes. His main research focus areas are: Target based drug design and synthesis of small molecules as potential anticancer and antimicrobial agents, Methodology development and development of electro analytical methods to trace biological, organic species by fabrication/modification of electrodes with nanomaterials. His research group has published more than 100 peer-reviewed articles in international journals, two book chapters and two patents, just in a span of 7 years (2014-2021). He has successfully graduated 21 postgraduate students (10 Ph.Ds. and 11 Masters) since 2014. He is one of the top researchers at UKZN and was the recipient of several awards in recognition of his achievements.

 List of Publications  Selected Publications

Ø  Target-based drug design and synthesis

·         Design and synthesis of quinoline-pyrimidine inspired hybrids as potential plasmodial inhibitors. European journal of medicinal chemistry (2021), 217,113330.

·         Development of novel GnRH and Tat48-60 based luminescent agents with enhanced cellular uptake and bioimaging properties. Dalton Transactions (2021), Ahead of Print. DOI:10.1039/d1dt00060h

·         An appraisal of anti-mycobacterial activity with structure-activity relationship of piperazine and its analogues: A review. European journal of medicinal chemistry (2021), 210, 112967.

·         Discovery of novel N-methyl carbazole tethered rhodanine derivatives as direct inhibitors of Mycobacterium tuberculosis InhA. Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry Letters (2019), 29 (16), 2338-2344.

·         Similarities, variations, and evolution of cytochrome P450s in Streptomyces versus Mycobacterium. Scientific Reports (2019), 9(1), 3962.

·         Crystal structure of the Eg5 – K858 complex and implications for structure-based design of thiadiazole-containing inhibitors. European Journal Of Medicinal Chemistry (2018), 156641-651.

·         Design and synthesis of novel thiadiazole-thiazolone hybrids as potential inhibitors of the human mitotic kinesin Eg5. Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry Letters, (2018), 28(17), 2930-2938.

·         Synthesis, anticancer evaluation, and molecular docking studies of some novel 4,6-disubstituted pyrazolo[3,4-d]pyrimidines as cyclin dependent kinase 2 (CDK2) inhibitors. Bioorganic Chemistry (2018), 79, 46-59.

·         An insight on synthetic and medicinal aspects of pyrazolo[1,5-a]pyrimidine scaffold. European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry (2017)126, 298-352.

·         Dehydrozingerone inspired styryl hydrazine thiazole hybrids as promising class of anti-mycobacterial agents. ACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters (2016), 7 (7), 686-691

·         An appraisal on recent medicinal perspective of curcumin degradant: Dehydrozingerone (DZG). Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry (2016), 24, 501-520.

Ø  Organic Synthesis: Methodology

·         One-Pot, Multicomponent, Diastereoselective, Green Synthesis of 3,4-Dihydro-2H-benzo[b][1,4]oxazine Analogues The Journal of Organic Chemistry, (2020), 85(12), 8221-8229.

·         N-Phenyl Substituent Controlled Diastereoselective Synthesis of β-Lactam-isatin Conjugates. Tetrahedron Letters, (2020), 61 (11), 151602.

·         Copper-Catalyzed Self-Condensation of Benzamide: Domino Reactions towards Quinazolinones. European Journal of Organic Chemistry, (2018), (39), 5382-5388.

Ø  Biosensors/Electrochemical Sensors

·         Polyaniline-cobalt oxide nanofibers for simultaneous electrochemical determination of antimalarial drugs: Primaquine and proguanil. Microchemical Journal (2021), 160(Part_B), 105709.

·         A novel copper-based 3D porous nanocomposite for electrochemical detection and inactivation of pathogenic bacteria. Sensors and Actuators, B: Chemical, (2020), 321, 128449.

·         A poly (acrylic acid)-modified copper-organic framework for electrochemical determination of vancomycin. Microchimica Acta, (2020), 187 (1), 1-9.

·         A Versatile and Ultrasensitive Electrochemical Sensing Platform for Detection of Chlorpromazine Based on Nitrogen-Doped Carbon Dots/Cuprous Oxide Composite Nanomaterials (Basel, Switzerland), (2020), 10(8).

·         Highly selective electrochemical detection of ciprofloxacin using reduced graphene oxide/poly(phenol red) modified glassy carbon electrode. Journal of Electroanalytical Chemistry, (2020), 871, 114254.

·         A simple sonochemical assisted synthesis of nanocomposite (ZnO/MWCNTs) for electrochemical sensing of Epinephrine in human serum and pharmaceutical formulation. Colloids and Surfaces A: Physicochemical and Engineering Aspects, (2020), 584, 124038.

·         Prostate cancer biomarkers detection using nanoparticles based electrochemical biosensors. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, (2019), 137, 213–221

·         A highly dispersed multi-walled carbon nanotubes and poly(methyl orange) based electrochemical sensor for the determination of an anti-malarial drug: Amodiaquine. Materials Science & Engineering. C, Materials For Biological Applications, (2019), 97285-292.

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