Leo Paquette

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Leo Paquette
Born(1934-07-15)July 15, 1934
DiedJanuary 21, 2019(2019-01-21) (aged 84)
ResidenceColumbus, Ohio
Alma materHoly Cross College, MIT
Known forDodecahedrane synthesis
AwardsArthur P. Sloan Fellowship

Guggenheim Fellowship
Arthur C. Cope Award

Senior Humboldt Fellowship
Scientific career
InstitutionsThe Ohio State University, Upjohn

Leo Armand Paquette (July 15, 1934 – January 21, 2019)[1] was an American organic chemist.


He was born on July 15, 1934 to parents Armand and Clarice with roots in Quebec (great-grandfather Edmund was born in Contrecoeur, Quebec[2]) and he received his B.S. degree from Holy Cross College in 1956 and his Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1959. After serving as a Research Associate at the Upjohn Company from 1959 to 1963, he joined the faculty of The Ohio State University. He was promoted to full professor in 1969 and was named Distinguished University Professor in 1987. A member of the National Academy of Sciences since 1984, Paquette has served on advisory committees for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Science Foundation (NSF), and has been a member of the editorial boards of publications such as the Journal of Organic Chemistry, Journal of the American Chemical Society, Organic Syntheses, Organic Reactions, and as the founding editor of the Electronic Encyclopedia of Reagents for Organic Synthesis (e-EROS).[3]

Scientific misconduct[edit]

In 1993, an Ohio State University investigation found that Paquette had plagiarized sections from an unfunded NIH grant application, for which he was a reviewer, and included the text in his own NIH grant application. The Office of Research Integrity agreed with the University investigation and "required institutional certification of proper attribution in any future grant proposals" from Paquette and "prohibited him from serving on Public Health Service Advisory Committees, Boards, or review groups" for ten years.[4]

For a separate plagiarism incident that occurred in 1991, the Ohio State University investigatory panel found that Paquette had plagiarized a NSF proposal, that he was also a reviewer for, and included sections in a paper he published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society. The NSF's Office of Inspector General (OIG) found that Paquette knowingly "submitted falsified evidence for the purpose of disproving the misconduct in science charge" and made "false statements under oath in the OIG investigation concerning the authenticity of the evidence". The falsified evidence consisted of a computer disk that included a "'mock draft,' a copy of the paper's final draft that Paquette had marked up to look like an earlier draft" and was back-dated prior to Paquette's review of the NSF proposal and, importantly, prior to the manufacture of the disk. The US Secret Service also found that someone had attempted to erase the lot number of the disk. In 1998, the NSF entered into a binding settlement with Paquette: Paquette would voluntarily exclude himself from any federal funding for two years and the NSF would not "issue a finding of misconduct in science".[5][6]


Paquette’s honors include Sloan Fellow, Guggenheim Fellow, ACS Award for Creative Work in Synthetic Organic Chemistry, and the Arthur C. Cope Scholar Award of the ACS. Professor Paquette’s career has resulted in contributions to numerous areas in the field of organic chemistry, including synthesis and properties of unusual molecules, natural products total synthesis, synthetic methodology, rearrangement processes, and stereoelectronic control.


Paquette is perhaps best known for achieving the first total synthesis of the Platonic solid dodecahedrane in 1982,[7][non-primary source needed] which still stands as one of the landmark achievements in the history of organic synthesis and hydrocarbon chemistry.[according to whom?][citation needed] As of this date,[when?] Paquette had authored more than 1000 papers, 38 book chapters, and 17 books, and had guided approximately 150 graduate students to their Ph.D. degrees.[8][third-party source needed]


  • Encyclopedia of reagents for organic synthesis, 2009
  • Handbook of reagents for organic synthesis, 1999-2007
  • Organic Reactions, Editor-In-Chief, Vols. 38-55
  • Encyclopedia of reagents for organic synthesis, 1995
  • Comprehensive Organic Synthesis: Combining C-C pi-bonds, 1992
  • Polyquinane chemistry : syntheses and reactions, 1987
  • Recent synthetic developments in polyquinane chemistry, 1984
  • Organic chemistry, 1979
  • Principles of modern heterocyclic chemistry, 1968

Further reading[edit]

The following are secondary sources in which the contributions of the Paquette research group are reported at significant length.

  • Nickon, Alex; Silversmith, Ernest F. (2013). Organic Chemistry: The Name Game: Modern Coined Terms and Their Origins. Amsterdam, NLD: Elsevier. pp. 7–10, 15, 54, 91, 202, 206, 251, 296f. ISBN 978-1483145235. Retrieved 29 January 2016.
  • Paquette, Leo A.; Crouse, Gary D. (1981). "Stereocontrolled Preparation of Precursors to all Primary Prostaglandins from Butadiene". In D.H.R. Barton. R.B. Woodward Remembered: A Collection of Papers in Honour of Robert Burns Woodward 1917-1979 (Tetrahedron 37, Supplement 1). Oxford, UK: Pergamon Press. pp. 281–287. ISBN 978-1483286082. Retrieved 29 January 2016.
  • Paquette, Leo A.; Orchin, Milton (1998). "Melvin Spencer Newman, March 10, 1908-May 30, 1993". Biographical Memoirs (Volume 73). Biographical Memoirs: A Series. Washington, DC, USA: National Academies Press. pp. 335–346. ISBN 978-0309591683. Retrieved 29 January 2016.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Leo Paquette Obituary - Columbus, OH | This Week Community Newspapers".
  2. ^ https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/35003439/edmund-paquette
  3. ^ e-EROS: Editors & Contributors. 2001. doi:10.1002/047084289x. ISBN 9780470842898.
  4. ^ Office of Research Integrity (June 25, 1993), "FINAL FINDINGS OF SCIENTIFIC MISCONDUCT", Nih Guide, DHHS, 22 (23), retrieved October 3, 2016
  5. ^ Zurer P (March 9, 1998). "NSF, Paquette Settle Misconduct Case". Chemical & Engineering News. 76 (10): 25–26. doi:10.1021/cen-v076n010.p025.
  6. ^ Gerstner, Ruth (August 9, 1993), Scientific Misconduct Charge Ruled Valid, Ohio State University, retrieved October 3, 2016
  7. ^ Leo A. Paquette; Robert J. Ternansky; Douglas W. Balogh; Gary Kentgen (1983). "Total synthesis of dodecahedrane". Journal of the American Chemical Society. 105 (16): 5446–5450. doi:10.1021/ja00354a043.[non-primary source needed]
  8. ^ http://chemistry.osu.edu/files/.../Paquette%20Brochure%202010-1_1.pdf

External links[edit]