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Iterative tandem catalysis of secondary diols and diesters to chiral polyesters.

Chemistry (Weinheim an der Bergstrasse, Germany) (2007-07-31)
Bart A C van As, Jeroen van Buijtenen, Tristan Mes, Anja R A Palmans, E W Meijer

The well-known dynamic kinetic resolution of secondary alcohols and esters was extended to secondary diols and diesters to afford chiral polyesters. This process is an example of iterative tandem catalysis (ITC), a polymerization method where the concurrent action of two fundamentally different catalysts is required to achieve chain growth. In order to procure chiral polyesters of high enantiomeric excess value (ee) and good molecular weight, the catalysts employed need to be complementary and compatible during the polymerization reaction. We here show that Shvo's catalyst and Novozym 435 fulfil these requirements. The optimal polymerization conditions of 1,1'-(1,3-phenylene) diethanol (1,3-diol) and diisopropyl adipate required 2 mol% Shvo's catalyst and 12 mg Novozym 435 per mmol alcohol group in the presence of 0.5 M 2,4-dimethyl-3-pentanol as the hydrogen donor. With these conditions, chiral polyesters were obtained with peak molecular weights up to 15 kDa, an ee value up to 99% and with 1-3 % ketone end groups. Also with the structural isomer, 1,4-diol, a chiral polyester was obtained, albeit with lower molecular weight (8.3 kDa) and slightly lower ee (94%). Aliphatic secondary diols also resulted in enantio-enriched polymers but at most an ee of 46 % was obtained with molecular weights in the range of 3.3-3.7 kDa. This low ee originates from the intrinsic low enantioselectivity of Novozym 435 for this type of secondary aliphatic diols. The results presented here show that ITC can be applied to procure chiral polyesters with good molecular weight and high ee from optically inactive AA-BB type monomers.

Product Number
Product Description

2,4-Dimethyl-3-pentanol, 99%