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.

  • News & Views
  • Published:

Synthetic methodology

From feedstock to pharmaceuticals

Fluoroalkyl fragments are ubiquitous motifs in pharmaceuticals and agrochemicals, but their introduction to a given molecule typically involves expensive or difficult-to-handle reagents. Now, the photocatalysed hydrofluoroalkylation of alkenes has been achieved using simple and readily available fluoroalkyl carboxylic acids.

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

Access options

Buy this article

Prices may be subject to local taxes which are calculated during checkout

Fig. 1: Iron photocatalysis enables the hydrofluoroalkylation of alkenes using fluoroalkyl carboxylic acids as reagents.


  1. Purser, S., Moore, P. R., Swallow, S. & Gouverneur, V. Chem. Soc. Rev. 37, 320–330 (2008).

    Article  PubMed  CAS  Google Scholar 

  2. Shibata, N., Matsnev, A. & Cahard, D. Beilstein J. Org. Chem. (2010).

    Article  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  3. López, S. E. & Salazar, J. J. Fluor. Chem. 156, 73–100 (2013).

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Depecker, C., Marzouk, H., Trevin, S. & Devynck, J. New J. Chem. 23, 739–742 (1999).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  5. Roth, H. G., Romero, N. A. & Nicewicz, D. A. Synlett. 27, 714–723 (2016).

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  6. Prier, C. K., Rankic, D. A. & MacMillan, D. W. C. Chem. Rev. 113, 5322–5363 (2013).

    Article  PubMed  PubMed Central  CAS  Google Scholar 

  7. Xuan, J., Zhang, Z.-G. & Xiao, W.-J. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 54, 15632–15641 (2015).

    Article  CAS  Google Scholar 

  8. Bian, K.-J. et al. Nat. Chem. (2023).

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  9. Juliá, F. ChemCatChem. 14, e2022009 (2022).

    Article  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Fabio Juliá.

Ethics declarations

Competing interests

The author declares no competing interests.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Check for updates. Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Juliá, F. From feedstock to pharmaceuticals. Nat. Chem. 15, 1657–1658 (2023).

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