Heterometallic Manganese-Oxido Clusters for Studies of Oxygen Chemistry
The process by which plants and cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) produce oxygen is poorly understood. Agapie will attempt to synthesize, manipulate and study a complex manganese-containing molecule that models the site playing a central role in the protein that these organisms rely on to produce oxygen. In his educational work, he plans to develop close ties among graduate, undergraduate and high-school students through a high-school outreach program that includes designing new experiments, career mentoring and organizing visits to Caltech. Such a program would encourage more students to major in science, Agapie says.