Organocatalysis and New Strategies
Organocatalysis refers to a form of catalysis, whereby the rate of a chemical reaction is increased by an organic catalyst referred to as an "organocatalyst" consisting of carbon, hydrogen, sulfur and other nonmetal elements found in organic compounds. Organocatalysts which display secondary amine functionality can be described as
performing either enamine catalysis (by forming catalytic quantities of an active enamine nucleophile) or iminium catalysis by forming catalytic quantities of an activated iminium electrophile). This mechanism is typical for covalent organocatalysis. The advantages of organocatalysts include their lack of sensitivity to moisture and oxygen, their ready availability, low cost, and low toxicity, which confers a huge direct benefit in the production of pharmaceutical intermediates when compared with (transition) metal catalysts.