Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

A breakthrough for organic reactions in water

Date:
June 26, 2014
Source:
McGill University
Summary:
Green-chemistry researchers 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 mark a potential milestone in efforts to develop organic reactions in water.

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.

Related Articles


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.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by McGill University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Feng Zhou, Chao-Jun Li. The Barbier–Grignard-type arylation of aldehydes using unactivated aryl iodides in water. Nature Communications, 2014; 5 DOI: 10.1038/ncomms5254

Cite This Page:

McGill University. "A breakthrough for organic reactions in water." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 June 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140626092917.htm>.
McGill University. (2014, June 26). A breakthrough for organic reactions in water. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 26, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140626092917.htm
McGill University. "A breakthrough for organic reactions in water." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140626092917.htm (accessed March 26, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Matter & Energy News

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Amazon Complains U.S. Is Too Slow To Regulate Drones

Amazon Complains U.S. Is Too Slow To Regulate Drones

Newsy (Mar. 25, 2015) — Days after getting approval to test certain commercial drones, Amazon says the Federal Aviation Administration is dragging its feet on the matter. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smartphone Use Changing Our Brain and Thumb Interaction, Say Researchers

Smartphone Use Changing Our Brain and Thumb Interaction, Say Researchers

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 25, 2015) — European researchers say our smartphone use offers scientists an ideal testing ground for human brain plasticity. Dr Ako Ghosh&apos;s team discovered that the brains and thumbs of smartphone users interact differently from those who use old-fashioned handsets. Jim Drury went to meet him. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
China Wants to Export Its Steel Problem

China Wants to Export Its Steel Problem

Reuters - Business Video Online (Mar. 25, 2015) — China is facing a crisis with a glut of steel and growing public anger over the pollution created by production. In a move to solve the problem, some steel mills are looking to relocate overseas. Jane Lanhee Lee reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Robot Stays on Its Feet Despite Punishment

Robot Stays on Its Feet Despite Punishment

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 24, 2015) — Robotic engineers have modelled a two-legged robot to be fast and agile like an ostrich. The design is more efficient and stable than bipedal robots built to move like humans, according to its creators who abuse the poor machine to test its skills. Ben Gruber has more. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins