Table of Contents
ISRN Organic Chemistry
Volume 2014, Article ID 531695, 29 pages
Review Article

Asymmetric Organocatalysis at the Service of Medicinal Chemistry

Department of Industrial Chemistry “Toso Montanari”, School of Science, University of Bologna, V. Risorgimento 4, 40136 Bologna, Italy

Received 4 December 2013; Accepted 30 December 2013; Published 11 March 2014

Academic Editors: J. M. Campagne, G. Li, J. C. Menéndez, and L. Wang

Copyright © 2014 Alfredo Ricci. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The application of the most representative and up-to-date examples of homogeneous asymmetric organocatalysis to the synthesis of molecules of interest in medicinal chemistry is reported. The use of different types of organocatalysts operative via noncovalent and covalent interactions is critically reviewed and the possibility of running some of these reactions on large or industrial scale is described. A comparison between the organo- and metal-catalysed methodologies is offered in several cases, thus highlighting the merits and drawbacks of these two complementary approaches to the obtainment of very popular on market drugs or of related key scaffolds.