Chemistry or chemical processes is used by everyone everyday in one way or the other. When preparing your morning tea or coffee you are extracting taste substances from tea leaves or coffee beans. When taking a shower you are using surface active molecules in the soap or schampoo to become clean. When walking or cycling to school you need to convert your breakfast into energy for your muscles to work efficiently. And so it continues for the duration of the day. Not even when you are asleep it is possible to avoid chemical reactions since your dreams are created by molecules known as signal substances so that your brain is activated.
Chemists and chemistry are needed in many different areas. To understand the development of different diseases as well as to discover and synthesize the future medicines to treat these diseases, chemistry is crucial. Chemists are also working with the construction of new products that are better adaptable to the environment and hence less harmful to the surroundings. In addition, chemistry is vital in lowering the energy consumption and carbon dioxide discharge as well as for developing alternative energy sources.
The Department of Chemistry offers several programmes and courses where content is directly related to on-going research and tought by lecturers active in the on-going research. At the moment research includes trace analysis of metals and steroids in biological samples; studies of structure, dynamic and function of proteins and biological membranes; formation, transport and effects of pollutants in the environment; solution chemistry in environmental chemical and industrial processes; synthesis of complicated natural products, pharmaceutical chemistry and the connection between the structue of compounds and their biological activity.
Research at the department is of high international quality and is covering all classical chemical disciplines organized in three focus areas: Biological Chemistry, Environmental and Biogeochemistry, and Technical Chemistry.
Courses and Programmes in Chemistry are closely connected to on-going research in these fields but also to several successful research centres where Chemistry plays an imortant role, such as Umeå Plant Science Centre (UPSC), The Laboratory for Molecular Infection Medicine Sweden (MIMS), Umeå Centre for Molecular Medicine (UCMM) and Umeå Centre for Microbial Research (UCMR).