Mariola Tortosa

Mariola Tortosa obtained her B.S. in Chemistry from the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM) in 1999. She then joined the group of Dr. R. Fernández de la Pradilla at the Instituto de Química Orgánica General (Madrid, Spain) to carry out her graduate work on the development of new asymmetric methods using chiral sulfoxides. In 2004, she received the Lilly Award for PhD students. In 2005, she moved to The Scripps Research Institute in Florida (USA) to work as a Postdoctoral Fellow with Prof. William Roush. Her research in Florida was directed toward completion of the total synthesis of the antitumor agent Superstolide A using a transannular Diels–Alder strategy. In 2008 she returned to the Instituto de Química Orgánica General (Madrid, Spain) as a Research Assistant. In 2011 she started her independent research at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid as a Ramón y Cajal Fellow. More recently, she received the ERC-Starting Grant awarded by the European Research Council to work on the project “Design and Applications of Unconventional Borylation Reactions”. Her research interests include boron chemistry, asymmetric catalysis and the synthesis of natural products. In December 2017, she was promoted to Associate Proffesor.



Mariola Tortosa’s experience and awards:

Education and Research Experience
  • 2017-: Associate Professor, UAM, Madrid
  • 2011-2017: Assistant Professor (Ramón y Cajal Researcher), UAM, Madrid
  • 2008-2011: Research Associate, CSIC, Madrid
  • 2005-2008: Postdoctoral Associate, The Scripps Research Institute, Florida

       Advisor: Prof. William R. Roush
       Projects: “Total Synthesis of Superstolide A” and “Synthesis of inhibitors of monocarboxylate transporter 1 (Mct-1)”

  • June 1999-Jan. 2005: Graduate Student, CSIC, Madrid

          Advisor: Prof. Roberto Fernández de la Pradilla
          Thesis title: “Application of Vinyl Sulfoxides in Claisen rearrangements, Diels-Alder reactions and nucleophilic additions” (Cum Laudem, January 2005).

  • August 2001-Dec. 2001: Visiting-Student, Ohio State University

            Advisor: Prof. Robert S. Coleman
            Project: “Total Synthesis of Antitumor Agents Oximidines I and II”

  • September 1994-June 1999: Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry (Honors), UAM, Madrid
Fellowships and Awards
  • Thieme Journal Award 2015
  • Eli Lilly Young Researcher Award 2014
  • RSEQ Young Investigator Award 2014
  • ERC Starting Grant (2013)
  • JSP Fellowship 48th Bürgenstock Conference 2013
  • 2010- Ramón y Cajal Contract
  • 2008-2010 Juan de la Cierva Contract (Research Associate)
  • 2005-2007 Postdoctoral Fellowship (Spanish government)
  • 2001-2005 Predoctoral Fellowship (Spanish government)
  • 2004 Eli Lilly Ph.D. award
  • 1999 Universidad Autónoma de Madrid Award (for the top students in Chemistry)
  • 1997-2000 Fellowship from the Madrid Regional Government


Invited Lectures
  • VI Brazil-Spain Workshop on Organic Chemistry, Oviedo, October 2018.
  • GlaxoSmithKline, Stevenage, UK, June 2018.
  • University of Tokyo, Tokyo, May 2018.
  • Institute of Transformative Bio-Molecules, Nagoya, May 2018.
  • Osaka University, May 2018.
  • The Second Japanese-Spanish Symposium on Organic Synthesis, Tokyo, May 2018
  • Girona Seminar 2018, Girona, Spain, April 2018.
  • ETH, Zurich, Switzerland, March 2018.
  • Novartis, Basel, Switzerland, March 2018.
  • Université Catholique de Louvain, Louvain La Neuve, Belgium, March 2018.
  • Instituto de Investigaciones Químicas, Sevilla, Spain, February 2018.
  • Barluenga Lectureship Symposium 2017, Oviedo, Spain, November 2017.
  • ICIQ School, Tarragona, Spain, 2017.
  • German-Spanish Symposium on Frontiers in Chemistry, Tarragona, Spain, 2017.
  • 11th International School of Organometallic Chemistry (ISOC), San Benedetto del Tronto, Italy,
  • 20th European Symposium on Organic Chemistry (ESOC), Cologne, Germany, 2017.
  • Centro de Investigación en Química Sostenible, Huelva, Spain, 2017.
  • CINQUIMA, Instituto Universitario, Valladolid, Spain, 2017.
  • Instituto universitario de bio-organica Antonio González, Tenerife, Spain 2017.
  • 6 Jornadas de la Red de Catálisis Asimétrica – Red CASI, Palma de Mallorca, Spain, 2016.
  • 9th Asian-European Symposium on Metal-Mediated Efficient Organic Synthesis (AES), Stockholm, Sweden, 2016.
  • EFMC International Symposium on Medicinal Chemistry (EFMC-ISMC), Manchester, UK,
  • 11th Spanish-Italian Symposium on Organic Chemistry SISOC-XI, San Sebastian, Spain, 2016.
  • Universidad de Zaragoza, Zaragoza, Spain, 2015.
  • 7th Spanish Portuguese Japanese Organic Chemistry Symposium, Sevilla, Spain, 2015.
  • Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Toledo, Spain, 2015.
  • New perspectives in asymmetric and organometallic synthesis 4th edition, Valencia, Spain, 2014
  • XI Simposio de Investigadores Jóvenes, Bilbao, Spain, 2014.
  • Instituto de Química Orgánica General, CSIC, Madrid, Spain, 2014.
  • 6th EuCheMS Organic Division Young Investigators Workshop, Cyprus, 2014.
  • Eli Lilly, Award lecture, Alcobendas, Spain, 2014.
  • XXV Spanish Symposium on Organic Chemistry, Eli Lilly Award lecture, Alicante, Spain, 2014.
  • Institut Català d’Investigació Química (ICIQ), Tarragona, Spain, 2013.


· Harnessing the Elusive 1,4-Reduction of Vinyl Epoxides through Copper Catalysis. Amenós, L; Nóvoa, L.; Trulli, L.; Arroyo-Bondía, A.; Parra, A.; Tortosa, M.* ACS Catal. 2019, 9, 6583-65-87.

· a-Amidoboronate esters by amide-directed alkane C-H borylation. Hyland, S. N.; Meck, E. A.; Tortosa, M.; Clark, T. B* Tetrahedron Lett. 2019, 60, 1096-1098.

· Identifying drugs that bind selectively to intersubunit general anesthetic sites in the a1β3γ2 GABAAR transmembrane domain. Jayakar, S. S.; Zhou, X.; Chiara, D. C.; Jarava-Barrera, C.; Savechenkov, P. Y.; Bruzik, K. S.; Tortosa, M.; Miller, K. W.; Cohen, J. B.* Mol. Pharmacol. 2019, 95, 615.

·Strained boronates do the trick. Parra, A.; Tortosa, M.* Nature Chemistry  2019, 11, 104.

· Stereospecific Synthesis of a-Hydroxy-Cyclopropylboronates from allylic epoxides. Amenos, L.; Trulli, L.; Novoa, L.; Parra, A.; Tortosa, M.* Angew. Chem. Int. Ed.  2019, 58,  1.

· Copper-Catalysed Cross-Coupling of Alkyl Grignard Reagents and Propargylic Ammonium salts: Stereospecific Synthesis of Allenes. Guisan-Ceinos, M.; Martín-Heras, V.; Soler-Yanes, R.; Cardenas, D.J.*; Tortosa, M.* Chem. Commun.  2018, 54,  8343.

· Cyclopropyl- and Cyclobutylboronates and -silanes: A Stereo­selective Approach.  Martín-Heras, V.;  Parra, A. ; Tortosa, M.* Synthesis 2018, 50, 470.

· Stereoselective Traceless Borylation-Allenation of Propargylic Epoxides: Dual Role of the Copper Catalyst. Jarava-Barrera, C.; Parra, A.; Amenos, L.; Arroyo, A.; Tortosa, M.* Chem. Eur. J. 2017, 23, 17478. (highlighted in Synfacts 2018, 14, 169)

· Copper-Catalyzed Eantioselective Synthesis of  β-Boron β-Amino Esters. Lopez, A.; Clark, T. B.; Parra, A.; Tortosa, M.* Org. Lett, 2017, 19, 6272. (highlighted in Synfacts 2018, 14, 273)

· Regio- and Stereospecific Copper-Catalyzed Substitution Reaction of Propargylic Ammonium Salts with Aryl Grignard Reagents. Guisan-Ceinos, M.; Martín-Heras, V.; Tortosa, M.* J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2017, 139, 8448.

· Enantioselective Synthesis of Cyclobutylboronates via a Copper-Catalyzed Desymmetrization Approach. Manuel Guisán-Ceinos, Alejandro Parra, Victor Martín-Heras, Mariola Tortosa,* Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2016, 55, 6969-6972.

· Copper-Catalyzed Borylative Aromatization of p-Quinone Methides: Enantioselective Synthesis of Dibenzylic Boronates. Carlos Jarava-Barrera, Alejandro Parra, Aurora López, Fabio Cruz-Acosta, Daniel Collado-Sanz, Diego J. Cárdenas, Mariola Tortosa,*ACS Catal. 2016, 6, 442-446. (highlighted in Synfacts 2016, 12, 0291)

· Copper-Catalyzed Silylation of p-Quinone Methides: New Entry to Dibenzylic Silanes, Aurora López, Alejandro Parra,  Carlos Jarava-Barrera, Mariola Tortosa*Chem. Comm. 2015, 51, 17684-17687.

· para-Quinone Methide: a New Player in Asymmetric Catalysis, Alejandro Parra, Mariola Tortosa*, ChemCatChem 2015, 7, 1524–1526.

·  Insight into the Copper-Catalyzed Borylation of Strained Alkenes, Alejandro Parra, Aurora López, Sergio Díaz-Tendero, Laura Amenós, José Luis Garcia-Ruano, Mariola Tortosa*, Synlett 2015, 26, 494. Young Investigators Issue

· Copper-catalyzed diastereo- and enantioselective desymmetrization of cyclopropenes: synthesis of cyclopropylboronates, Alejandro Parra, Laura Amenós, Manuel Guisán-Ceinos, Aurora López, José Luis Garcia-Ruano, Mariola Tortosa*J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2014, 136, 15833-15836.

· Copper(I)-Catalyzed Formal Carboboration of Alkynes: Synthesis of Tri- and Tetrasubstituted Vinylboronates, Ricardo Alfaro, Alejandro Parra, José Alemán, José Luis Garcia-Ruano, Mariola Tortosa*J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2012, 134, 15165-15168. (Highlighted in

Synthesis of Syn and Anti 1,4-Diols by Copper Catalyzed Boration of Allylic Epoxides, Tortosa, M*, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2011, 50, 3950-3953. (Highlighted in Synform 2011, 08.)