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Nat Commun. 2017 Jan 31;8:14233. doi: 10.1038/ncomms14233.

Biomimetically inspired asymmetric total synthesis of (+)-19-dehydroxyl arisandilactone A.

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Key Laboratory of Bioorganic Chemistry and Molecular Engineering of Ministry of Education, Beijing National Laboratory for Molecular Science (BNLMS), College of Chemistry and Molecular Engineering, Peking-Tsinghua Center for Life Sciences, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China.
School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Chongqing University, Chongqing 400030, China.
Laboratory of Chemical Genomics, School of Chemical Biology and Biotechnology, Peking University Shenzhen Graduate School, Shenzhen 518055, China.
Key Laboratory of Marine Drugs, Chinese Ministry of Education, School of Medicine and Pharmacy, Ocean University of China, 5 Yushan Road, Qingdao 266003, China.


Complex natural products are a proven and rich source of disease-modulating drugs and of efficient tools for the study of chemical biology and drug discovery. The architectures of complex natural products are generally considered to represent significant barriers to efficient chemical synthesis. Here we describe a concise and efficient asymmetric synthesis of 19-dehydroxyl arisandilactone A-which belongs to a family of architecturally unique, highly oxygenated nortriterpenoids isolated from the medicinal plant Schisandra arisanensis. This synthesis takes place by means of a homo-Michael reaction, a tandem retro-Michael/Michael reaction, and Cu-catalysed intramolecular cyclopropanation as key steps. The proposed mechanisms for the homo-Michael and tandem retro-Michael/Michael reactions are supported by density functional theory (DFT) calculation. The developed chemistry may find application for the synthesis of its other family members of Schisandraceae nortriterpenoids.

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