Silver-free gold(I) catalysts for organic transformations

Hubert Schmidbaur, Annette Schier

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

75 Scopus citations


The majority of gold(I) catalysts employed in organic transformations in homogeneous systems are presently generated in situ by reactions of gold halides AuX or their 1: 1 complexes [(L)AuX] with silver salts AgY (X = Cl, Br; L = R3P, NHC, tht etc.; Y = BF4, PF6, SbF 6, OSO2CF3, OC(O)CF3 etc.). This usage of silver salts is not only economically unfavorable, but also has several practical disadvantages regarding inter alia the thermal and photochemical stability of the reaction mixtures, problems of inexact stoichiometries, difficulties in separation and recycling, and cooperative effects due to Au-Ag metallophilic interactions which can induce a different course of the reactions. There is therefore a move towards syntheses of silver-free homogeneous gold(I) catalysts. The past and current approaches and opportunities are summarized in this review.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)329-350
Number of pages22
JournalZeitschrift fur Naturforschung - Section B Journal of Chemical Sciences
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Gold catalysis
  • Gold complexes
  • Homogeneous catalysis
  • Silver salts
  • Silver-free gold catalysts


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