Great news for the inorganic chemists!!! A classical strategy widely used for decades in organic chemistry is now available for the synthesis of bimetallic species. A new Mn-Mg bonded compound was recently discovered by the group of Cameron Jones in Australia while trying to synthesise new Mn-Mn complexes. The direct comparison with the well known Grignard reagents gives the new Mn-Mg based complex the qualification of “inorganic Grignard reagent”.
Normal Grignard reagents, or maybe more correctly now Organic Grignard reagents, are organomagnesium based strong nucleophiles used mainly but not exclusively for the formation of carbon-carbon bonds. Discovered by French chemist François Auguste Victor Grignard who was awarded the 1912 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Grignard reagents have become an essential tool in organic synthesis.
The inorganic version, the so called “Inorganic Grignard reagents”, are not a new concept although their use is yet far from been a general tool for the creation of metal-metal bonds. The new Mn-Mg bonded compound discovered by Jones and co-workers was successfully utilised to transfer the Manganese fragment for the preparation of the first two-coordinate manganese(I) dimer, and the related Mn-Cr hetereobimetallic complex.
Do you want to know more? Take a look to the original paper.
Jamie Hicks, Chad E. Hoyer, Boujemaa Moubaraki, Giovanni Li Manni, Emma Carter, Damien M. Murphy, Keith S. Murray, Laura Gagliardi, and Cameron Jones. A Two-Coordinate Manganese(0) Complex with an Unsupported Mn–Mg Bond: Allowing Access to Low Coordinate Homo- and Heterobimetallic Compounds. J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2014, 136, 5283–5286.