In the last years, bismuth has transitioned from being considered a mere Lewis acid catalyst to being recognised as an interesting redox catalyst for organic synthesis. A rational design of a ligand scaffold for the Bi center resulted in a robust catalytic system applicable to various bismuth redox processes.
Bismuth is the last non-radioactive element of the periodic table.1) In addition to its great availability and economical cost, certain Bi compounds have been reported to be non-toxic and non-carcinogenic.2) The presence of Bi in pharmacologically active ingredients such as the antiseptic agent bibrocathol or the antacid medication bismuth subsalicylate exemplifies this low toxicity (Figure 1a).3) It is for these reasons that Bi has been used to develop sustainable chemical processes.4)
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