The introduction of stimuli-responsive polymers into the study of organic catalysis leads to the generation of a new kind of polymer-based stimuli-responsive recyclable catalytic system. Owing to their reversible switching properties in response to external stimuli, these systems are capable of improving the mass transports of reactants/products in aqueous solution, modulating the chemical reaction rates, and switching the catalytic process on and off. Furthermore, their stimuli-responsive properties facilitate the separation and recovery of the active catalysts from the reaction mixtures. As a fascinating approach of the controllable catalysis, these stimuli-responsive catalytic systems including thermoresponsive, pH-responsive, chemo-mechano-chemical, ionic strength-responsive, and dual-responsive, are reviewed in terms of their nanoreactors and mechanisms.
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