Gold compounds can be used to treat rheumatism in joints. Thiolato complexes are used.
Apart from the soluble complex "auranofin" (a phosphine/thiolate mixed ligand complex), polymeric Au(I) compounds are generally used. These contain thiosulfate ("Sanocrysin"), thiomalate ("Myochrisin") or thioglucose ("Solangol") as ligands.
The structure of polymeric "Myochrisin" was solved recently. It contains infinite chains with Au(I) centers coordinated linearly by sulfur atoms.
The exact functional mechanism of gold containing anti rheumatics is not yet completely understood.
Gold complexes with phosphorus donor chelating ligands like bis(diphenylphosphino)ethane (DPPE) have cancerostatic properties and are currently being tested for clinical use.