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A Highly Enantioselective Amino Acid-catalyzed Route To Functionalized α-amino Acids

A. Córdova, W. Notz, G. Zhong, J. M. Betancort, C. Barbas
Published 2002 · Chemistry

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The development of syntheses providing enantiomerically pure α-amino acids has intrigued generations of chemists and been the subject of intense research. This report describes a general approach to functionalized α-amino acids based on catalytic asymmetric synthesis. Proline catalyzed Mannich-type reactions of N-PMP-protected α-imino ethyl glyoxylate with a variety of unmodified ketones to provide functionalized α-amino acids in high yields with excellent regio-, diastereo-, and enantioselectivities. Study of seven examples yielded six with product ee values of ≥99%. In reactions involving ketone donors where diastereoisomeric products could be formed, two adjacent stereogenic centers were created simultaneously upon carbon−carbon bond formation with complete syn-stereocontrol. Significantly, this methodology utilizes readily available and rather inexpensive starting materials, does not require any preactivation of substrates or metal ion assistance, and can be carried out on a gram scale under operation...

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