CrossRef enabled

PAC Archives

Archive →

Pure Appl. Chem., 2008, Vol. 80, No. 1, pp. 31-43

Quest for the ideal olefin metathesis catalyst*

Anna Michrowska and Karol Grela

Institute of Organic Chemistry, Polish Academy of Sciences, Kasprzaka 44/52, 01-224, Warsaw, Poland

Abstract: Attempts were made to create a catalyst that approaches Gladysz's vision of an "ideal catalyst". Modifications of the Hoveyda-Grubbs catalyst were carried out with the aim to increase its activity and broaden the scope of its applicability to challenging metathesis reactions. This was done by introduction of an electron-withdrawing substituent on the isopropoxybenzylidene group in order to diminish the donor properties of the oxygen atom. The resulting stable and easily accessible nitro-substituted Hoveyda-Grubbs catalyst has found a number of successful applications in various research and industrial laboratories. Also, a new concept for noncovalent immobilization of a ruthenium olefin metathesis catalyst is presented. The 2-isopropoxybenzylidene ligand of Hoveyda-Grubbs carbene is further modified by an additional amino group, and immobilization is achieved by treatment with sulfonated polystyrene, forming the corresponding ammonium salt. In this novel strategy for the immobilization of ruthenium-based metathesis catalysts, the amino group plays a dual role, being first an active anchor for immobilization and secondly, after protonation, activating the catalysts by electron-donating to -withdrawing switch. The same concept has been used in the preparation of a quaternary ammonium catalyst for aqueous olefin metathesis.
*Pure Appl. Chem. 80, 1-57 (2008). A collection of invited, peer-reviewed articles by the winners of the 2007 IUPAC Prize for Young Chemists.