Professor Anthony Stone

Prof. Anthony Stone has been a member of the College since 1957, and is now retired and a Life Fellow. He was Director of Studies in Natural Sciences for many years, and was for a time a Tutor, including a period as Admissions Tutor in Science.

Prof. Stone's research interests have included a wide range of topics in Theoretical Chemistry, but have focused in recent years on the theory of intermolecular forces. Many properties of matter depend on the weak forces between molecules rather than the strong chemical bonds that hold the atoms together in molecules, and accurate calculations of these weak forces are essential for understanding such properties. It is important, for example, to understand how drug molecules can suppress the action of particular proteins by binding to the active site. The search for new drugs nowadays usually starts on the computer, by calculating how well candidate drug molecules bind to the target protein. Another application involves the design of molecular crystals. The molecules in such crystals are packed together in ways that depend on the intermolecular forces, and an accurate understanding of these forces is needed, for example to predict likely crystal structures or to design crystals that have particular optical properties. Prof. Stone's research has been concerned with developing that understanding, and with finding accurate methods for describing and calculating the forces.

His book on "The Theory of Intermolecular Forces" is an account of this field of research.