Journal of the American Chemical Society

A simple and efficient synthesis of functionalized cyclic carbonate monomers using a versatile pentafluorophenyl ester intermediate.

PMID 20883030


An improved two-step synthetic route to functionalized cyclic carbonate monomers that features a novel cyclic carbonate intermediate with an active pentafluorophenyl ester group (MTC-OPhF(5)) has been developed. The versatile pentafluorophenyl ester intermediate can be synthesized on the gram to kilogram scale in one high-yielding step and is easy to store and handle on the benchtop. The active pentafluorophenyl ester of MTC-OPhF(5) is amenable to further substitution with suitable nucleophiles such as alcohols and amines to generate functionalized cyclic carbonates in high yields. The substitution reaction is tolerant of a wide variety of functionalities, including various hydrophobic and hydrophilic groups, reactive functionalities (via thiol-ene click chemistry or alkyl halides), and protected acids, alcohols, thiols, and amines. In view of the ever-increasing need for biodegradable and biocompatible polymers, this new methodology provides a simple and versatile platform for the synthesis of new and innovative materials.

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