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Evaluating aryl esters as bench-stable C(1)-ammonium enolate precursors in catalytic, enantioselective Michael addition-lactonisations

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Claire M. Young, James E. Taylor, Andrew D. Smith

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An evaluation of a range of aryl, alkyl and vinyl esters as prospective C(1)-ammonium enolate precursors in enantioselective Michael addition-lactonisation processes with (E)-trifluoromethylenones using isothiourea catalysis is reported. Electron deficient aryl esters are required for reactivity, with 2,4,6-trichlorophenyl esters providing optimal product yields. Catalyst screening showed that tetramisole was the most effective isothiourea catalyst, giving the desired dihydropyranone product in excellent yield and stereoselectivity (up to 90:10 dr and 98:2 er). The scope and limitations of this process have been evaluated, with a range of diester products being generated after ring-opening with MeOH to give stereodefined dihydropyranones with excellent stereocontrol (10 examples, typically ~90:10 dr and >95:5 er).


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4747-4752
JournalOrganic & Biomolecular Chemistry
Issue number19
Early online date11 Apr 2019
Publication statusPublished - 21 May 2019

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