Dinuclear gold complexes have the ability to interact with one or more substrates in a dual-activation mode, leading to different reactivity and selectivity than their mononuclear relatives. In this contribution, this difference was used to control the catalytic properties of a gold-based catalytic system by site-isolation of mononuclear gold complexes by selective encapsulation. The typical dual-activation mode is prohibited by this catalyst encapsulation, leading to typical behavior as a result of mononuclear activation. This strategy can be used as a switch (on/off) for a catalytic reaction and also permits reversible control over the product distribution during the course of a reaction.
Jans ACH, Gómez-Suárez A, Nolan SP, Reek JNH (2016) A Switchable Gold Catalyst by Encapsulation in a Self-Assembled Cage. Chemistry - A European Journal 22: 14836–14839. Available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/chem.201603162.
Support for this work was generously provided by King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) Office of Sponsored Research(OSR) under Award No. OSR-2015-CCF-1974-03 (to SPN) and by ERC grant nr.ERC-2013-AdG 339786 NAT-CAT(to JNHR).