The structural and functional design of metal nanoparticles has recently allowed remarkable progress in the development of high-performance catalysts. Gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) are among the most innovative catalysts, despite bulk Au metal being regarded as stable and inactive. The hybridization of metal NPs has attracted major interest in the field of advanced nanocatalysts, due to electro-mediated ligand effects. In practical terms, metal NPs need to be supported on a suitable matrix to avoid any undesirable aggregation; many researchers have reported the potential of polymer-supported AuNPs. However, the use of conventional polymer matrices make it difficult to take full advantage of the inherent properties of the metal NPs, since most of active NPs are imbedded inside the polymer support. This results in poor accessibility for the reactants. Herein, we report the topochemical synthesis of Au and palladium (Pd) bimetallic NPs over the surfaces of 2,2,6,6-tetramethylpiperidine-1-oxyl (TEMPO)-oxidized cellulose nanofibers (TOCNs), and their exceptional catalytic performance. Highly-dispersed AuPdNPs were successfully synthesized in situ
on the crystal surfaces of TOCNs with a very high density of carboxylate groups. The AuPdNPs@
TOCN nanocomposites exhibit excellent catalytic efficiencies in the aqueous reduction of 4-nitrophenol to 4-aminophenol, depending on the molar ratios of Au and Pd.