Light-induced electron transfer (CuI to CuII), oxidative addition (CuI to CuIII), or the activation of copper alkene or alkyne complexes are possible key steps that offer unique possibilities for organic synthesis, including [2+2]-cycloadditions, cross-coupling reactions or atom transfer radical additions. This Minireview provides an overview on the photophysical properties of photocatalysts based on copper and on synthetic transformations mediated by them.
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