Abstract D'Souza

Colors of Life: Molecule of Life

Prof. Francis D’Souza

Department of Chemistry

University of North Texas

Denton, TX 75203


This talk, targeted for undergraduate science/engineering students, addresses a fundamental question: ‘Why are leaves green and blood red?’ The answer lies with one family of pigments, the porphyrins and related structures. These pigments are also responsible for the fundamental energetic processes that make life as we know it possible.1 The properties of these colorful molecules used in a wide range of applications, from cancer therapy, catalysis, artificial photosynthesis to microelectronics, will be highlighted. This talk is an introduction to the porphyrins and their role in life and modern technology.



1The Colours of Life: An Introduction to the Chemistry of Porphyrins and Related Compounds by L. R. Milgom, Oxford University Press, 1997.