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Andrew Duncan

Professor of Chemistry
Specialty: Organic Chemistry

Headshot of Andrew Duncan

Contact Information

Salem Campus

Olin Science Center 314
900 State Street
Salem  Oregon  97301


  • Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley
  • B.A., Middlebury College


Research Interests

Chemical Synthesis

Chitosan -- a polysaccharide derived from the shells of crustaceans -- provides an ideal biocompatible platform for the development of polymer-based molecular therapeutics. The Duncan Group is pursuing the synthesis of covalent conjugates between hydrophobic small molecule drugs and water-soluble chitosans. We are particularly interested in developing methods for coupling antioxidants to chitosan scaffolds and using the resulting conjugates to prevent oxidative damage to cellular structures.

Personal Interests

Mountaineering, Backpacking, Skiing, Rock Climbing, Food, Wine, Beer


S.T. Heller, A.P. Duncan, C.L. Moy, S.R. Kirk “The Value of Failure: A Student-Driven Course-Based Research Experience in an Undergraduate Organic Chemistry Lab Inspired by an Unexpected Result” J. Chem. Educ. 2020, 97, 3609.

V.P. Narayanaswamy, A.P. Duncan, S.M. Baker, W.P. Wiesmann, J.J. LiPuma, S.M. Townsend. “In Vitro Activity of a Novel Glycopolymer against Biofilms of Burkholderia cepacia Complex Cystic Fibrosis Clinical Isolates” Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, 2019, 63, 1.

A.P. Duncan, A.R. Johnson. "A 'Classic Papers' Approach to Teaching Undergraduate Organometallic Chemistry" J. Chem. Educ., 2007, 84, 443.

F.E. Michael, A.P. Duncan, Z.K. Sweeney, R.G. Bergman. "Rearrangements and Stereomutations of Metallacycles Derived from Allenes and Imidozirconium Complexes" J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2005, 127, 1752.

A.P. Duncan, J.L. Leighton. "Enantioselective Cu-Catalyzed Conjugate Addition of Diethylzinc to Acyclic Aliphatic Enones" Org. Lett., 2004, 6, 4117.

F.E. Michael, A.P. Duncan, Z.K. Sweeney, R.G. Bergman. "Mechanisms of Allene Stereoinversion by Imidozirconium Complexes" J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2003, 125, 7784.

A.P. Duncan, R.G. Bergman. "Selective Transformations of Organic Molecules by Imidozirconocene Complexes" The Chemical Record, 2002, 2 , 431.

A.P. Duncan, S.M. Mullins, J. Arnold, R.G. Bergman. "Synthesis, Structural Investigation, and Reactivity of Neutral and Cationic Bis(guanidinato)zirconium(IV) Complexes" Organometallics, 2001, 20, 1808.

S.M. Mullins, A.P. Duncan, R.G. Bergman, J. Arnold. "Reactivity of a Titanium Dinitrogen Complex Supported by Guanidinate Ligands: Investigation of Solution Behavior and a Novel Rearrangement of Guanidinate Ligands" Inorg. Chem., 2001, 40, 6952.

Willamette University

Department of Chemistry

Willamette University
900 State Street
Salem Oregon 97301 U.S.A.
503-370-6013 voice
503-375-5425 fax