Please note! Course description is confirmed for two academic years (1.8.2018-31.7.2020), which means that in general, e.g. Learning outcomes, assessment methods and key content stays unchanged. However, via course syllabus, it is possible to specify or change the course execution in each realization of the course, such as how the contact sessions are organized, assessment methods weighted or materials used.


After the course the student will have deeper understanding on natural products (secondary metabolites), their structures, occurrence, significance, classification, and biosynthesis.

The student will gain an understanding on how to evaluate and design an asymmetric synthesis for a moderately complex target molecule. The course will emphasize the synthetic applications to natural products and medicinal chemistry.


Credits: 5

Schedule: 07.09.2020 - 15.10.2020

Teacher in charge (valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022): Ari Koskinen

Teacher in charge (applies in this implementation): Ari Koskinen

Contact information for the course (valid 14.08.2020-21.12.2112):

By e-mail to lecturer (

CEFR level (applies in this implementation):

Language of instruction and studies (valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022):

Teaching language: English

Languages of study attainment: English


  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    Asymmetric synthesis: classification, reaction types, mechanisms. Methods for determining enantiopurity; general methods for asymmetric induction. Reactions of carbonyl compounds and olefins.

    Natural products classified according to the classes: their occurrence, biosynthesis and synthesis: sugars, amino acids, nucleic acids, polyketides, terpenes, alkaloids.

  • Applies in this implementation:

    The course consists of ten sessions covering different classes of natural products. The first sessions are 'teacher-oriented', but the course shifts towards student oriented classes, where the participants' role increases, eventually culminating in the final session(s) where the students provide seminar talks on a topic of their own choice.

Assessment Methods and Criteria
  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    Lectures, seminar presentation

  • Applies in this implementation:

    The evaluation will be based on the final seminar, both presentation and an accompanying 'lecture notes'. The evaluation consists of assessment by the lecturer as well as by the students taking part in the course.

  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    Lectures 24 h
    Seminars 8 h
    Home problem solving 20 h
    Independent homework 70 h

  • Applies in this implementation:

    Lectures: the sessions (10 x 2 h + 4 hours 'spare', if needed)

    Seminars: student seminars

    Home problem solving: time for preparing for the lecture sessions

    Independent: preparation of the seminar presentation


Study Material
  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    Koskinen, Asymmetric Synthesis of Natural Products, Wiley & Sons, 2012.

  • Applies in this implementation:

    Lecture notes available on MyCourses.

    The textbook is available in electronic form from the Library services.

Substitutes for Courses
  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    CHEM-E4245 Natural Product Chemistry or CHEM-E4125 Asymmetric Synthesis

  • Valid 01.08.2020-31.07.2022:

    CHEM-E4195 Selectivity in Organic Synthesis or equivalent

SDG: Sustainable Development Goals

    3 Good Health and Well-being

    4 Quality Education

    12 Responsible Production and Consumption



Registration and further information