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Journal of the American Chemical Society

Catalytic enantioselective cross-couplings of secondary alkyl electrophiles with secondary alkylmetal nucleophiles: Negishi reactions of racemic benzylic bromides with achiral alkylzinc reagents.


PMID 23039358

Abstract

We have developed a nickel-catalyzed method for the asymmetric cross-coupling of secondary electrophiles with secondary nucleophiles, specifically, stereoconvergent Negishi reactions of racemic benzylic bromides with achiral cycloalkylzinc reagents. In contrast to most previous studies of enantioselective Negishi cross-couplings, tridentate pybox ligands are ineffective in this process; however, a new, readily available bidentate isoquinoline-oxazoline ligand furnishes excellent ee's and good yields. The use of acyclic alkylzinc reagents as coupling partners led to the discovery of a highly unusual isomerization that generates a significant quantity of a branched cross-coupling product from an unbranched nucleophile.

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