Homogeneous catalysis

Homogeneous catalysis is a type of catalysis in which the catalyst operates in the same phase as the reactants — usually dissolved in a solvent. Mechanistic studies of homogeneous catalysts are generally easier than those of heterogeneous catalysts, which aids optimization. They can, however, be difficult to separate from the products and thus recycle.


Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • News & Views |

    Metal-catalysed asymmetric allylic alkylations are now well established in natural product synthesis. When applied to butenolides, this reaction has always produced the C3-allylated products rather than the C5-allylated analogues. A method is introduced that provides a switch in regioselectivity and enables straightforward access to butenolide-containing natural products with complete stereocontrol.

    Nature Synthesis 1, 588-589
  • News & Views |

    A strategy to synthesize allenylphosphine derivatives with both P and axial chirality is developed and allows for diverse derivatizations of chiral phosphines. The Ni-catalysed enantioconvergent reaction occurs without racemization or symmetrization of the propargylic carbonate substrate, as demonstrated by combined experimental and computational methods.

  • News & Views |

    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.

    • Jun-Jie Chen
    •  & Huan-Ming Huang
    Nature Chemistry 14, 846-848
  • News & Views |

    Nickel-catalysed cross-electrophile coupling (XEC) is a useful reaction in synthetic organic chemistry. Now, a nickel-catalysed electrochemical XEC reaction mediated by dynamic ligand exchange enables the formation of a C(sp2)–C(sp3) bond between tertiary alkyl bromides and aryl (pseudo)halides.

    • Huan-Ming Huang
    Nature Synthesis 1, 510-511
  • News & Views |

    Being able to run two reactions concurrently enables synthetic methods to be streamlined, but simultaneously controlling the selectivity of both reactions is an enormous challenge. Now, a directing group is used to reinvent a classic tandem reaction, activating specific sp3 C–H bonds with pinpoint accuracy.

    • Sarah E. Jenny
    •  & Graham E. Dobereiner
    Nature Chemistry 14, 594-595