Editor’s Collection: Xiaohua Liu

In this month’s Editor’s collection, Associate Editor Xiaohua Liu shares some of her favourite recent Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry articles

The Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry Editor’s collection is a showcase of some of the best articles published in the journal, hand selected by our Associate Editors and Editorial Board members. For this month’s selection, Associate Editor Xiaohua Liu  has highlighted some of her favourite recent works. Take a look at what she thought of the articles below, and find out more about the research and the researchers behind the papers in our interviews with the authors.

Xiaohua’s Selection: 

Hydroquinone and benzoquinone-catalyzed aqueous Knoevenagel condensation

Ryoya Takakura, Kaho Koyama, Marina Kuwata, Tsuyoshi Yamada, Hironao Sajiki and Yoshinari Sawama

Xiaohua’s comments: “The combination of hydroquinone and benzoquinone makes the Knoevenagel condensation in water easier. The work of Sawama et al. provides a novel route to the synthesis of α,β-unsaturated nitrile derivatives and beyond.”

Find out more in our interview with the authors


Synthetic approaches and applications of sulfonimidates

Xiaohua’s comments: “The prominent applications of sulfonimidates result in an unfailing interest in these compounds. In this review, Stockman and co-workers summarised the synthesis of such cyclic and acyclic sulfur(VI) species from different sulfur reagents, discussing also the application of sulfonimidates towards other important organosulfur compounds. This work manifests the opportunities of sulfonimidate chemistry. “


Revisiting the role of acids and hydrogen bond acceptors in enamine formation

Zhichao Lu, Gerald B. Hammond and Bo Xu

Xiaohua’s comments: “Organo-enamine catalysis is powerful, and understanding the effect of acid additives and hydrogen-bonding acceptors in the enamine formation process is helpful. Systematic investigation from Hammond, Xu, and their co-workers makes these issues clear. Their study showed that acids could not change, or even destabilize enamine formation, but hydrogen bond acceptors, such as solvent and basic additives, will accelerate the equilibrium toward enamine formation.”

Find out more in our interview with the authors


Chemoselective Activation of Ethyl vs Phenyl Thioglycosides: One-pot Synthesis of Oligosaccharides

Cian Mc Carthy and Xiangming Zhu

Xiaohua’s comments: “Here, the selective activation of common ethyl thioglycoside donors over other popular phenyl thioglycoside donors, by the use of simple N-trifluoromethylthiosaccharine/TMSOTf system is disclosed. Chemoselectivity is high regardless of armed and disarmed patterns. Reactivity-based syntheses of disaccharides and even oligosaccharide assemblies are available in connection with sensible promoters. Thioglycoside chemistry keeps pushing forward oligosaccharide synthesis. This paper is part of our excellent “Glycosylation Collection” in OBC.”

Find out more in our interview with the authors

Meet the Editor:

Xiaohua Liu is an Associate Editor for Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry since August 2020. Xiaohua Liu obtained her BSc degree from Hubei Normal University (2000), and obtained her MS (2003) and PhD (2006) from Sichuan University. She joined the faculty of Prof. Feng’s group in 2006, and was appointed as an associate professor. In 2010, she w  as promoted as a full professor. Her current research interests include asymmetric catalysis and chiral drug synthesis. To find out more about Xiaohua’s researches,  please visit her webpage.



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