Richard Tarkka specializes in Organic Chemistry and he currently teaches the sophomore two semester course in that area (2401Chem 2401 Syllabus/3411). Historically, the focus of his research has been developing methods to synthesize polymers with the uniform size distribution. Currently, he is collaborating with Prof. Patrick Desrochers of the UCA Chemistry Department. Their project focuses on the synthesis of new solid-supported organic ligands, and the use of these systems, when coordinated with metal ions, in the selective binding of specific amino acids and peptide sequences. The ultimate goals of the project are new methods for protein purification and quantification of sulfur-containing amino acids.