Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

A Breakthrough for Organic Reactions in Water

27.06.2014

Researchers discover way to use water as solvent in a reaction widely used to make chemical products

Green-chemistry researchers at McGill University have discovered a way to use water as a solvent in one of the reactions most widely used to synthesize chemical products and pharmaceuticals.

The findings, published June 26 in Nature Communications, mark a potential milestone in efforts to develop organic reactions in water.

Chao-Jun Li and Feng Zhou of McGill’s Department of Chemistry report that they have discovered a catalytic system which for the first time allows direct metal-mediated reactions between aryl halides and carbonyl compounds in water.

For the past two decades, researchers have been exploring ways to do away with chemists’ traditional reliance on non-renewable petrochemical feedstocks and toxic solvents. One important method has involved replacing the toxic solvents used in metal-mediated reactions with water – something that was previously considered impossible.

While researchers at McGill and elsewhere have succeeded in using water in metal-mediated reactions between carbonyl compounds and other halides, attempts to do so for the most challenging reaction, between aryl halides and carbonyl compounds, have never worked – until now.

Prof. Li and Dr. Zhou, a postdoctoral fellow, found that rhodium -- a metal primarily used in the catalytic converters of automobiles -- as a catalyst together with zinc as a mediator can make the reaction possible in water. This new technique bypasses a number of challenges posed by conventional practices in carrying out this reaction, which is widely used in synthesizing fine chemicals, biologically active molecules and pharmaceuticals. Traditional methods, discovered more than a century ago, require that moisture and air be carefully excluded from the process.

The new aqueous approach promises to “streamline synthetic sequences and make them safer and more efficient,” said Prof. Li, Canada Research Chair in Green Chemistry.

The research was supported by the Canada Research Chairs program, the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Nature et technologies, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, and the Canada Foundation for Innovation.

“The Barbier-Grignard-Type Carbonyl Arylation Using Unactivated Aryl Halides in Water”, Feng Zhou and Chao-Jun Li, Nature Communications, published June 26, 2014. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms5254

Christopher Chipello | newswise
Further information:
http://www.mcgill.ca

Further reports about: Breakthrough McGill Water compounds discovered moisture reaction reactions technique toxic

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Female bonobos start up early
28.07.2014 | Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig

nachricht Pump! And you will grow
28.07.2014 | Max-Planck-Institut für Molekulare Pflanzenphysiologie

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

9th European Wood-Based Panel Symposium 2014 – meeting point for the wood-based material branch

24.07.2014 | Event News

“Lens on Life” - Artists and Scientists Explore Cell Divison

08.07.2014 | Event News

First International Conference on Consumer Research | ICCR 2014: Early bird deadline July 31, 2014

08.07.2014 | Event News

 
Latest News

Female bonobos start up early

28.07.2014 | Life Sciences

First national study finds trees saving lives, reducing respiratory problems

28.07.2014 | Health and Medicine

Kidney transplant drug halves the early risk of rejection and allows less toxic treatment

28.07.2014 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>