Metal-free catalyst shielding studied

Sep 06, 2006

U.S. scientists say they've found a simple metal free catalyst that can shield a specific alcohol without modifying another nearby alcohol.

Amir Hoveyda and colleagues at Boston College and Scott Denmark and colleagues at the University of Illinois-Urbana say protecting groups are often needed in organic synthesis to shield one part of a molecule from chemical change while another part of the same molecule is altered.

The catalyst found by the researchers puts a protecting group called a silyl ether onto a class of compounds called secondary alcohols, and by protecting that specific alcohol, a chemist can now selectively modify the remaining "unprotected" alcohol.

Since the catalyst does not contain any metals it is more environmentally friendly -- or "greener" -- than many other catalysts, the researchers said. And it can easily be prepared from commercially available materials.

The research is explained in the current issue of the journal Nature.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Study confirms water quality in glass and plastic bottles

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Does your computer know how you're feeling?

16 minutes ago

Researchers in Bangladesh have designed a computer program that can accurately recognize users' emotional states as much as 87% of the time, depending on the emotion.

Recommended for you

The fluorescent fingerprint of plastics

18 hours ago

LMU researchers have developed a new process which will greatly simplify the process of sorting plastics in recycling plants. The method enables automated identification of polymers, facilitating rapid separation ...

Water and sunlight the formula for sustainable fuel

22 hours ago

An Australian National University (ANU) team has successfully replicated one of the crucial steps in photosynthesis, opening the way for biological systems powered by sunlight which could manufacture hydrogen ...

User comments : 0