Development of metal catalyzed homogeneous, phase transfer, and heterogeneous mediated oxidation, reduction, carbonylation and cyclization reactions. These processes are being applied to the synthesis of compounds of value to the petrochemical and/or pharmaceutical industries. Ionic liquids are useful solvents, and sometimes promoters, for some of these reactions. For example, the asymmetric synthesis of -lactams by rhodium (I) catalysts is a remarkable example of a regio, stereo, and enantiospecific reaction.
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