Laboratory : UCCS Artois UMR CNRS 8181

Adress : Université d’Artois, Faculté Jean Perrin, rue Jean Souvraz, SP18, 62307 Lens Cedex

Team : Equipe Catalyse Supramoléculaire


As part of the development of clean and eco-friendly chemistry, our research group develops catalytic systems using “green” solvents such as water or supercritical CO2. Faced with mass transfer problems inherent in such systems, we have developed multiple strategies to allow a hydrophobic molecule (substrate) to react with a water soluble organometallic catalyst. Thus, the use of additives such as modified cyclodextrins has proved to be an effective solution to overcome the problems of mass transfer in systems involving organometallic catalysis in aqueous biphasic medium.
During the past 15 years, our group has used the ability of cyclodextrins (CDs) to form inclusion complexes with hydrophobic substrates to facilitate their reaction with the water-soluble catalyst into water (Inverse Phase Transfer Catalysis – fig. 1a) or at the interface (Interfacial Catalysis – fig. 1b).

Fig. 1: Principle of aqueous biphasic organometallic catalysis assisted by CDs.


Cyclodextrins have also been used to disperse and stabilize solid supports in aqueous phase. In this context, our approach was to disperse and stabilize in aqueous phase palladium catalysts on activated carbon (Pd/C) or Ru(0) ruthenium nanoparticles using modified cyclodextrins. The latter proved to be poly-functional entities, acting both as stabilizing (or dispersing) agents of the catalyst in water and as molecular receptors capable of bringing the substrate to the active metal center in order to selectively recognize the substrate (Fig. 2).


Fig. 2



Scientists implicated : Eric Monflier, Anne Ponchel, Frédéric Hapiot, Sébastien Tilloy, Hervé Bricout, Stéphane Menuel, Bastien Léger, Frédéric Wyrwalskki.

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