Adrian Schwan

Adrian Schwan
Department of Chemistry
Phone number: 
(519) 824-4120 ext. 58781
MACN 336
Seeking academic or industry partnerships in the area(s) of: 
Synthetic Organic Chemistry, Organic Reactivity
Available positions for grads/undergrads/postdoctoral fellows: 
Enquire by email


IR and ReactIR spectrometers, Polarimeter, GC, HPLC


We develop and understand new chemical reactions. We can assess the outcomes of reactions using the instrumentation listed and also NMR. 

Education and Employment Background

Dr. Adrian L. Schwan received his PhD at McMaster University in 1988. Between 1987 and 1989, he held a position as an Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) Postdoctoral researcher at the State University of New York. In 1994, Schwan joined the Department of Chemistry at the University of Guelph where he is now a full professor.

Research Themes

  1. Chemistry of sulfenic acid anions. The Schwan group research is focused on developing new transformations of organosulfur compounds. He explores the synthetic utility of low valent sulfur acids, determining their value for creating stereogenic centres and probing the role of proximal functionality on the reactivity of sulfenates anions. 
  2. Heterocyclic chemistry. The Schwan group is interested in the preparation of unique small ring heterocycles and probing their reactivity for possible applications in fragment based drug discovery.
  3. Medicinal Chemistry. The group is interested in synthesizing bioactive analogs of naturally occurring nutraceuticals. 
  4. Isotopically Enriched Synthesis. In collaborative endeavors the group has prepared several 2H and 13C labelled compounds for applications in pharmacokinetics and interfacial studies.    
  5. Computation Chemistry. The Schwan group is always trying to understand the reaction mechanism that accompanies synthetic transformations. This performed using computational methods with the Gaussview/Gaussian software platform.


  • Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) Discovery Grant, 2020
  • Member, NSERC Chemistry Discovery Grant Evaluation Committee, 2016-2019
  • 2014 Canadian Journal of Chemistry Best Paper Award, Canadian Science Publishing, 2015
  • Former and Inaugural Editor of the Journal of Sulfur Chemistry, 2004-2010
  • Fellow of the Chemical Institute of Canada, 2009

Media Coverage