Medicinal Chemistry Division

The research focus of the department is to discover small molecule lead candidates as a potential treatment for unmet medical needs.  The therapeutic areas currently under focus are cancer (particularly breast and ovarian cancer), Alzheimer’s disease, tuberculosis, gram-negative infections, sickle cell anaemia, and rheumatoid arthritis. The department has strong expertise in synthetic organic chemistry, total synthesis of complex natural products, isolation of natural products from medicinal plants, phytopharmaceuticals/ nutraceuticals, etc. The research activities of the department are supported by the state-of-art analytical facilities available within the central instrumentation facility. The department has experience and expertise in preclinical development / IND enabling of lead candidates.

  • Drug discovery and development: To discover preclinical candidates (NCER’s & phytopharmaceuticals) for unmet medical needs, and take them to clinical trials.


  • Vision: To become unique research team in the field of medicinal chemistry and to deliver clinical candidates as potential treatments for unmet medical needs
  • Mission: Drug discovery and preclinical development employing computational/ medicinal chemistry tools.


  • Synthetic organic chemistry
  • Total synthesis of complex natural products
  • Computational chemistry/ drug design
  • Medicinal chemistry/ lead optimization
  • Peptide chemistry
  • Phytopharmaceuticals/ nutraceuticals

All state-of-art equipment that are necessary for chemistry research such as rotary evaporators, vacuum pumps, chillers, magnetic stirrers, low temperature reaction baths, flash chromatography, microwave reactors, HPLC systems, etc are available within the department. The departmental research activities are supported by a state-of-art analytical facilities available within the central instrumentation facility.

List of permanent staff members currently working in the Department :

 D. Srinivasa Reddy
Director, IIIM & Head of the dept

Dr Sandip B Bharate
Principal Scientist

 Dr. S D Sawant
Principal Scientist

Dr. Qazi Naveed Ahmed
Principal Scientist

Dr. Parvinder Pal Singh
Principal Scientist

Dr. Rajkishore Rai
Senior Scientist

  • List of current ongoing projects
    • API synthesis for COVID-19 (Funding agency: CSIR)
    • Repurposing of colchicine for management of COVID-19 patients (Funding agency: CSIR)
    • CSIR – ICMR – DBT Tripartite project on phytopharmaceuticals (Funding agency: DBT)
    • Preclinical development of crocin-1 enriched Crocus sativus as phytopharmaceutical lead (Funding agency: CSIR)


Authors Title Journal
Kumar M, Ahmed R, Singh M, Sharma S, Thatikonda S, Singh PP. Functionalization of Alkynes and Alkenes Using a Cascade Reaction Approach: Synthesis of β-Keto Sulfones under Metal-free Conditions J Org Chem,  2020 85(2):716-725
Bag D, Sawant SD Heteroarene-tethered Functionalized Alkyne Metamorphosis Chemistry, 2020. doi: 10.1002/chem.202002154
Shankar S, Junaid Ur Rahim, Rai R. Self-Assembly in Peptides Containing β-and γ-amino Acids. Curr Protein Pept Sci. 2020;21(6):584-597. doi: 10.2174/1389203721666200127112244
Abdullaha M; Nuthakki VK; Bharate SB. Discovery of methoxy-naphthyl linked N-(1-benzylpiperidine) benzamide as a blood-brain permeable dual inhibitor of acetylcholinesterase and butyrylcholinesterase Eur. J. Med. Chem., 2020, 207, 112761


Abdullaha M; Mohammed S; Ali M; Kumar A; Vishwakarma RA;  Bharate SB Discovery of Quinazolin-4(3H)-ones as NLRP3 Inflammasome Inhibitors: Computational Design, Metal-free Synthesis and In-vitro Biological Evaluation J. Org. Chem., 2019, 84, 5129-5140
Rather SA, Qazi NA Iodine-DMSO-promoted divergent reactivities of arylacetylenes Chem Commun (Camb). 2019;55(31):4511-4514.
Bharate SB; Kumar V; Jain SK; Mintoo NJ; Guru SK; Nuthakki VK; Sharma M; Bharate SS; Gandhi SG; Mondhe DM; Bhushan S; Vishwakarma RA. Discovery and Preclinical Development of IIIM-290, an Orally Active Potent Cyclin-dependent Kinase Inhibitor J. Med. Chem. 2018, 61, 1664-1687
Shankar S, Faheem MM, Nayak D, Wani NA, Farooq S, Koul S, Goswami A, Rai R. Cyclodipeptide c(Orn-Pro) Conjugate with 4-Ethylpiperic Acid Abrogates Cancer Cell Metastasis through Modulating MDM2.


Bioconjug Chem. 2018;29(1):164-175. doi: 10.1021/acs.bioconjchem.7b00670.


Mignani S¸ Rodrigues J,  Tomas H, Jalal R, Singh PP, Majoral JP, Vishwakarma RA. Present drug-likeness filters in medicinal chemistry during the hit and lead optimization process: how far can they be simplified? Drug Discov Today, 2018 Mar;23(3):605-615
Mudududdla R.; Mohanakrishnan D; Bharate SS; Vishwakarma RA; Sahal D; Bharate SB Orally Effective Aminoalkyl 10H-Indolo-[3,2-b]quinoline-11-carboxamide Kills the Malaria Parasite by Inhibiting Host Hemoglobin Uptake ChemMedChem, 2018, 13, 2581-2598
Inventors/ Contributors Title Description Year
Bharate SB, Kumar A, Manda S, Joshi P, Bharate SS, Vishwakarma RA. N-Substituted beta-carbolinium compounds as potent P-glycoprotein inducers The new derivatives of marine natural product fascaplysin as potential amyloid-beta clearing agents US10072009
Vishwakarma, R.A.; Sawant, S.D.; Singh, P.P.; Dar, A,H.; Sharma, P.R.; Saxena, A.K.; Nargotra, A.; Kumar, K.A.A.; Ramesh, M.; Qazi, A.K.; Hussain, A.; Chanauria, N. Design, synthesis and biological evaluation of isoform selective analogs of liphagane scaffold as anticancer agents: p13k-alpha/beta inhibitors. The new derivatives of natural product liphagal as isoform selective PI3K inhibitors US9206201, JP6126197
Vishwakarma RA, Bharate SB, Bhushan S, Mondhe DM, Jain SK, Meena S, Guru SK, Pathania AS, Kumar S, Behl A, Mintoo MJ, Bharate SS, Joshi P. Rohitukine analogs as cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitors and a process for the preparation thereof Rohitukine derivative as Cdk inhibitors for cancer treatment US9932327B2;


Singh,  P. P.; Munagala, G.; Yempalla, K.R.; Khan,  I.A.; Kalia, N.P.; Rajput, S. V.; Nargotra, A.; Sawant, D. S.; Vishwakarma, R. A. 6 Nitro-2,3-dihydroimidazo[2,1-b] oxazoles and a process for the preparation thereof. New series of nitroimidazoles and oxazoles for tuberculosis treatment US9845330
Jain SK, Sidiq T, Meena S, Khajuria A, Vishwakarma RA, Bharate SB. Preparation of tetrahydro-​2H-​pyrano[3,​2-​c]​isochromene-​6-​one analogs for the treatment of inflammatory disorders New derivatives of natural product bergenin for treatment of rheumatoid arthritis US9777014B2;
Yempalla ,K.R.;  Munagala, G.;  Singh, S.; Sharma, S.; Khan, I.A.;  Vishwakarma, R.A.;  Singh, P.P. Substituted 1,2,3-triazol-1-yl-methyl-2,3-dihydro-2-methyl-6-nitroimidazo[2,1-b]oxazoles as anti-mycobacterial agents and a process for the preparation thereof. New series of nitroimidazoles for tuberculosis treatment US9822126
Bharate SS, Kumar V, Singh R, Rani S, Gupta M, Kumar A, Bharate SB, Vishwakarma RA. Sustained release formulations of Crocus sativus New formulations for dementia WO2019077621A1; US16753969
Vishwakarma, R.A.;  Bharate, S.B.;  Kumar, A.;  Singh,  B.; Kumar, A.; Bhushan, S.;  Hamid, A.; Joshi, P.; Guru, S.K.;  Kumar, S.;  Hussain, A.; Qazi, A.K.;  Bharate, S.S.;  Sharma, P.;  Saxena, A.K.; Mondhe, D.M.; Mahajan, G.;  Wani, Z. 10-substituted colchicinoids as potent anticancer agents. New derivatives of colchicine with improved therapeutic window and reduced Pgp induction liability (for cancer treatment) US9868695
Singh, D.;  Sharma, J.P.;  Jaglan, S.;  Dar, A. H .; Khajuria, A.;  Singh, V. P .; Vishwakarma, R.A. Brachiatin d and process for their production thereof. New microbe-derived natural products US 9624266