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The Journal of organic chemistry

Rationalization of enantioselectivities in dialkylzinc additions to benzaldehyde catalyzed by fenchone derivatives.


PMID 10813898

Abstract

Three (-)-fenchyl alcohol derivatives, ¿(1R,2R,4S)-exo-(2-Ar)-1,3, 3-trimethylbicyclo[2.2.1] heptan-2-ol, Ar = o-anisyl (2), 2-N-methylimidazolyl (3), 2-N,N-dimethylbenzylamine (4)¿ were synthesized, characterized by X-ray analyses, and employed as precatalysts in diethyl zinc additions to benzaldehyde. Directions and relative degrees of enantioselectivities are rationalized by QM/MM ONIOM computations of mu-O transition structure models. Enantioselectivities arise from repulsive interactions between "transferring" or "passive" alkyl groups at the zinc centers and the substituents at donor groups or the bicyclo[2.2.1]heptane moieties. These results enable predictions for ligand-tuning to improve catalyst efficiency of fenchone-based ligands in dialkylzinc additions to aldehydes.