About Professor Kakkar

Professor Kakkar

Ashok Kakkar obtained his PhD from University of Waterloo under the direction of Professor Todd B Marder (currently Chair of Inorganic Chemistry, Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany). In his PhD thesis research, he explored synthesis and catalytic potential of indenyl rhodium complexes. He subsequently obtained NSERC Post-doctoral fellowship to carry out studies at i) University of Cambridge (UK) with Late Professor The Lord Lewis, where he developed methodologies to linear transition metal based polymers; and ii) Northwestern University (USA) working with Professor Tobin J. Marks, and examined self-assembled monolayers for second-order nonlinear optics. He is currently a Professor in the Department of Chemistry at McGill University.

Kakkar Group focuses on developing chemical methodologies to a variety of well-defined nanostructures that can help resolve complex problems in biology.  His research utilizes two platforms in a convergent manner to obtain a detailed understanding of drug delivery and diagnostics, and their efficacy in therapeutic interventions. The contributions from his laboratory are simplifying synthetic schemes to i) macromolecules of diverse nature: branched (miktoarm polymers), hyperbranched (dendrimers), combinations thereof (telodendrimers); and ii) functionalized metal architectures (iron oxide nanoparticles and gold nanoshells). The research methods combine small molecule to macromolecule and nanoparticle synthesis with self-assembly and biology.


1990: Ph.D., University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
Research Supervisor: Professor Todd Marder
Thesis Title: Fundamental studies of transition metal indenyl complexes

2016: Mini-MBA: Executive Development Course
McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Recipient of The Clark Science Executive Leadership Fund Award

Professional Positions

2016: Professor, McGill University, Montreal, Canada

2015-2016: Visiting Research Scholar
Host: Professor Robert Langer, Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology
Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

2000 Visiting Research Scholar
Host: Professor Jean-Pierre Majoral. Laboratoire de Chimie de Coordination du CNRS, Toulouse Cédex 4 - France

1999-2000: Visiting Research Scholar
Host: Professor Gerard van Koten. Debye Institute, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands

1999 – 2016: Associate Professor (tenured), McGill University, Montreal, Canada

1993 – 1999: Assistant Professor, McGill University, Montreal, Canada

1991 – 1993: NSERC Post-doctoral Fellow, Northwestern University, Evanston, USA (with Professor Tobin Marks)

1990 – 1991: NSERC Post-doctoral Fellow, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK (with the Late Professor Lord Lewis)

Editorial Board

Molecules (MDPI AG), St. Alban-Anlage 66, 4052 Basel Switzerland

Molecules, Nanochemistry, Section-Editor-in-Chief

Journal Academic Editor

Molecules, Special Issue: “Functional Dendrimers”, 2016.


Molecules Special Issue: Dr. Tomalia






Molecules, Special Issue: “Dendrimers: A Themed Issue in Honor of Professor Donald A. Tomalia on the Occasion of his 80th Birthday”, 2018.  









Molecules, Special Issue: “Boron in Catalysis and Materials Chemistry: A Themed Issue in Honor of Professor Todd B. Marder on the Occasion of His 65th Birthday”, 2020.