In trivalent nitrogen compounds, the nitrogen lone pair is highly amenable to bind to samarium iodide prior to electron transfer. As SmI2 is more azaphilic than oxophilic, its affinity to the nitrogen lone pair is more pronounced in aza substrates than in the analogous carbonyl compounds. The impact of this binding is very large in terms of reaction rate and at the same time gives rise to unique mechanistic phenomena, which include unusual kinetic rate orders, catalysis by quantum dots, and remote functionalization. Even reduction of nitriles was found to be affected by this coordination to SmI2. This review focuses on the reduction mechanisms of three groups of compounds: imines, azobenzene, and nitriles.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
SH thanks the Israel Chemical science foundation for providing the funding to carry out the research work discussed in this review article.
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- Nitrogen coordination
- Reaction mechanism
- Samarium iodide