Skip to main content

Thank you for visiting You are using a browser version with limited support for CSS. To obtain the best experience, we recommend you use a more up to date browser (or turn off compatibility mode in Internet Explorer). In the meantime, to ensure continued support, we are displaying the site without styles and JavaScript.


N2O revalorization

Nitrous oxide is traditionally considered to be an inert molecule, and methods for its activation and utilization are currently limited. Now, a strategy has been developed — involving an organometallic Baeyer–Villiger step — for the conversion of aryl halides to phenols under mild conditions, using N2O as the oxygen source.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution

Access options

Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.

Fig. 1: Catalytic synthesis of phenols with nitrous oxide.


  1. Sambiagio, C., Marsden, S. P., Blacker, A. J. & McGowan, P. C. Chem. Soc. Rev. 43, 3525–3550 (2014).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  2. Chan, A. Y. et al. Chem. Rev. 122, 1485–1542 (2022).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  3. Sang, R. et al. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 58, 16161–16166 (2019).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  4. Le Vaillant, F. et al. Nature 604, 677–683 (2022).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Severin, K. Chem. Soc. Rev. 44, 6375–6386 (2015).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  6. Gianetti, T. L. et al. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 55, 1854–1858 (2015).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Vaughan, G. A., Rupert, P. B. & Hillhouse, G. L. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 109, 5538–5539 (1987).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  8. Terrett, J. A., Cuthbertson, J. D., Shurtleff, V. W. & MacMillan, D. W. C. Nature 524, 330–334 (2015).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Huan-Ming Huang.

Ethics declarations

Competing interests

The authors declare no competing interests.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Chen, JJ., Huang, HM. N2O revalorization. Nat. Chem. 14, 846–848 (2022).

Download citation

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:


Quick links

Nature Briefing

Sign up for the Nature Briefing newsletter — what matters in science, free to your inbox daily.

Get the most important science stories of the day, free in your inbox. Sign up for Nature Briefing