The merger of transition metal and photocatalysis

Jack Twilton, Chi Chip Le, Patricia Zhang, Megan H. Shaw, Ryan W. Evans, David W.C. MacMillan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1466 Scopus citations


The merger of transition metal catalysis and photocatalysis, termed metallaphotocatalysis, has recently emerged as a versatile platform for the development of new, highly enabling synthetic methodologies. Photoredox catalysis provides access to reactive radical species under mild conditions from abundant, native functional groups, and, when combined with transition metal catalysis, this feature allows direct coupling of non-traditional nucleophile partners. In addition, photocatalysis can aid fundamental organometallic steps through modulation of the oxidation state of transition metal complexes or through energy-transfer-mediated excitation of intermediate catalytic species. Metallaphotocatalysis provides access to distinct activation modes, which are complementary to those traditionally used in the field of transition metal catalysis, thereby enabling reaction development through entirely new mechanistic paradigms. This Review discusses key advances in the field of metallaphotocatalysis over the past decade and demonstrates how the unique mechanistic features permit challenging, or previously elusive, transformations to be accomplished.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number0052
JournalNature Reviews Chemistry
StatePublished - Jan 11 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering


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