Isosorbide synthesis from cellulose with an efficient and recyclable ruthenium catalyst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


  • Juha Keskiväli
  • Sari Rautiainen
  • Mikko Heikkilä
  • Teemu T.T. Myllymäki
  • Jaakko Pekka Karjalainen
  • Kalle Lagerblom
  • Marianna Kemell
  • Marko Vehkamäki
  • Kristoffer Meinander
  • Timo Repo

Research units

  • University of Helsinki


Herein, we describe an efficient two-step pathway for isosorbide synthesis from cellulose with the use of new recyclable Ru-catalysts. We show that the oxidative and sulfonation treatments of the new Ru-catalysts increase the acidity and the hydrophilicity of the activated carbon support material, thus reducing the catalyst fouling caused by the build-up of insoluble products. Accordingly, the new Ru-catalysts are more resilient towards lignin containing cellulose than a commercial Ru/C catalyst, and the best Ru-catalyst maintains its high catalytic activity in four consecutive runs with dissolving pulp, microcrystalline cellulose and even with residual lignin containing bagasse pulp. Overall, our two-step approach provides isosorbide in high yields of 56-57 mol% (49-50 wt% of the substrate) from the cellulosic substrates.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4563-4570
Number of pages8
JournalGreen Chemistry
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - 2017
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

ID: 15861188