Bidentate Lewis Acids as Catalysts in Organic Synthesis
Nature shows in every living system the power of catalysis. The high effectiveness and selectivity in Natures chemistry is without comparison. One trick Nature uses is the effect of multidentate binding, meaning that the substrates are hold in place by multiple interactions.
We learned from Nature by designing bidentate Lewis acids as new catalysts for Organic Synthesis. We illustrated the principle by developing the first catalyzed inverse electron-demand Diels-Alder (IEDDA) reaction of 1,2-diazines by a bidentate Lewis acid.
Currently, we extend this general concept to other organic reactions as well as developing novel transformations.