Cassandra Fraser

Fraser, Cassandra L.

Primary Appointment

Professor, Chemistry


  • BA, Interdisciplinary, Kalamazoo College, Kalamazoo, MI
  • MTS, Religion and Culture, Harvard Divinity School, Cambridge, MA
  • PhD, Inorganic and Organic, The University of Chicago, Chicago, IL
  • Postdoc, Polymer and Organometallic, California Institute of Technology

Contact Information

PO Box 400319
Telephone: 434-924-7998

Research Disciplines

Biotechnology, Cancer Biology, Cell and Developmental Biology, Chemistry, Translational Science

Research Interests

Polymeric Metal Complexes. Metallobiomaterials for Medicine and Biotechnology. Bio-inspired and Sustainable Design. Responsive Nanoscale Assemblies.

Research Description

Our research program is concerned with the synthesis, properties and applications of metal complexes with polymeric ligands. These multifunctional targets are prepared by combining coordination chemistry with living polymerization methodologies. Like metalloproteins, polymeric metal complexes feature site-isolated metal centers with responsive properties, and offer many opportunities for further modification. The metal center can lend color, luminescence, magnetism, and reactivity. As materials, these systems can function as soluble agents, nanoparticles, films and coatings, or bulk materials, and block copolymers can form higher order nanoscale assemblies. In recent years, we have directed our attention to biomaterials¬ónamely polymers used in biology and medicine and materials that are safe for the environment. Along with fundamental studies in metallopolymer synthesis and properties, we also explore uses for biocompatible and degradable polymers as optical imaging agents, oxygen sensors, and drug delivery systems in biomedicine and sustainable design.

Selected Publications