Dr John Parkinson

Senior Research Fellow

Pure and Applied Chemistry


Personal statement

John Parkinson is a career-track academic applications specialist in the field of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy with a wealth of interdisciplinary research experience. He is head of NMR spectroscopy at Strathclyde having joined the University in November 2001 from positions as NMR spectroscopist with the Metals-in-Medicine group and the EPSRC National Ultra High Field NMR Facility at the University of Edinburgh (1990-2001).

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Area of Expertise

John is an expert in the solution-phase aspects of NMR spectroscopy and has wide knowledge of practical experimental NMR methods, NMR instrumentation, NMR data handling and interpretation, NMR laboratory management as well as skills in writing, teaching, molecular modelling, research project supervision, examining at both undergraduate and postgraduate level and disemination of research findings through conference oral and poster presentations. John is also involved in shaping future national UK-wide and local area policy on NMR equipment provision and is a serving member (honourary treasurer) of the Royal Society of Chemistry NMR Discussion Group.

Prize And Awards

Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry

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John qualified with a PhD from the University of Leeds (1989) and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (FRSC).

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Investigation of the influence of pH on the properties and morphology of gelatin hydrogels
Goudie K J, McCreath S J, Parkinson J A, Davidson C M, Liggat J J
Journal of Polymer Science Part A: Polymer Chemistry Vol 61, pp. 2316-2332 (2023)
Insights into the spectrum of activity and mechanism of action of MGB-BP-3
Hind Charlotte, Clifford Melanie, Woolley Charlotte, Harmer Jane, McGee Leah M C, Tyson-Hirst Izaak, Tait Henry J, Brooke Daniel P, Dancer Stephanie J, Hunter Iain S, Suckling Colin J, Beveridge Rebecca, Parkinson John A, Sutton J Mark, Scott Fraser J
ACS Infectious Diseases Vol 8, pp. 2552-2563 (2022)
A study of the reactivity of cyclic aminomethylammonium mannich salts
Dimitrova Daniela, McMahon Connor, Kennedy Alan R, Parkinson John A, Leach Stuart G, Boulton Lee T, Pascoe David D, Murphy John A
Tetrahedron Vol 128 (2022)
A regioselectively 1, 1',3 ,3'-tetrazincated ferrocene complex displaying core and peripheral reactivity
Honeyman Gordon W, Armstrong David R, Clegg William, Hevia Eva, Kennedy Alan R, McLellan Ross, Orr Samantha A, Parkinson John A, Ramsay Donna L, Robertson Stuart D, Towie Stephen, Mulvey Robert E
Chemical Science Vol 11, pp. 6510-6520 (2020)
New reductive rearrangement of N-Arylindoles triggered by the Grubbs-Stoltz reagent Et3SiH/KOtBu
Smith Andrew J, Dimitrova Daniela, Arokianathar Jude N, Kolodziejczak Krystian, Young Allan, Allison Mark, Poole Darren L, Leach Stuart G, Parkinson John A, Tuttle Tell, Murphy John A
Chemical Science Vol 11, pp. 3719-3726 (2020)
Bis(phosphine)hydridorhodacarborane derivatives of 1,1'-bis(ortho-carborane) and their catalysis of alkene isomerization and the hydrosilylation of acetophenone
Chan Anthony PY, Parkinson John A, Rosair Georgina M, Welch Alan J
Inorganic Chemistry Vol 59, pp. 2011-2023 (2020)

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John teaches NMR spectroscopy to third year undergraduate Chemistry students and Biomolecular, Structure, Dynamics and Mechanism to final year Chemistry with Drug Discovery and postgraduate diploma in Medicinal Chemistry. He also delivers a course in NMR spectroscopy to postgraduate researchers.

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Research Interests

Research interests include understanding the factors that drive molecular recognition and assembly in biomolecular systems, exploring enzyme reactivity and substrate demand in the context of complex natural product mixtures, defining applications for new experimental developments in the field of NMR spectroscopy, monitoring chemical and biochemical reaction processes and in understanding molecular structure, dynamics and mechanism in the broadest sense.

Professional Activities

Beilstein Journal of Organic Chemistry (Journal)
Peer reviewer
Block by Block: Developments in NMR Methodology
In Cell NMR – Developing Cellular Characterization Tools for Oligonucleotide Therapeutics
New NMR Methods and their Applications in Mechanistic Study
Scottish NMR Users Group (SNUG) 2022 Meeting

More professional activities


NMR-BASE: Nuclear Magnetic Resonance for Biomolecule Analysis in Supported Environments
Parkinson, John (Principal Investigator) Burley, Glenn (Co-investigator) Dufès, Christine (Co-investigator) Irving, Craig (Co-investigator) Jamieson, Craig (Co-investigator) Scott, Fraser (Co-investigator) Seib, Philipp (Co-investigator) Taladriz Sender, Andrea (Co-investigator)
01-Jan-2023 - 31-Jan-2024
MGB Formulations
Suckling, Colin (Principal Investigator) Graham, Duncan (Co-investigator) Parkinson, John (Co-investigator)
01-Jan-2012 - 30-Jan-2012
Photocatalysis for Organic Synthesis
Mills, Andrew (Principal Investigator) Parkinson, John (Co-investigator)
Inorganic semiconductors such as TiO2 are known to generate free radicals when irradiated with UV-visible light in the presence of suitable substrates. This project will explore the chemistry of such radicals with the particular objective of identifying and optimising free radical addition reactions which will be beneficial in organic synthesis. Organic synthesis driven by heterogeneous photocatalysis is environmentally and economically attractive, and has the potential to achieve higher selectivity to desired products than conventional routes. We propose to explore a wide range of free radical addition reactions initiated by the known photo-Kolbe reaction of carboxylic acids over titania surfaces. Reactions showing the most promise will be examined in more detail, using in particular in-situ EPR spectroscopy (to observe the initially generated free radicals), in-situ NMR spectroscopy (to identify intermediates and products), and time resolved optical spectroscopy (to observe short lived species) to determine the reaction pathways. Initial studies will be made with TiO2, but we will also explore improvements in performance by adding metals to enhance hole:electron separation, or nitrogen dopants to achieve visible light activation. Visible light activation will also be attempted with other semiconductors. A crucial component of the project is the design and construction of reactors for scaling up promising reactions to a scale attractive to the pharmaceutical industry. The project team has wide experience in photocatalysis, free radical chemistry, in-situ spectroscopic methods and photocatalytic reactor design and construction. Advice and assistance in selection of target reactions relevant to the pharmaceutical industry is provided by GlaxoSmithKline. A successful outcome of the project could bring about a paradigm shift in technologies for high value organic synthesis.
01-Jan-2010 - 01-Jan-2011

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Dr John Parkinson
Senior Research Fellow
Pure and Applied Chemistry

Email: john.parkinson@strath.ac.uk
Tel: 548 2820