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J Am Chem Soc. 2017 Apr 26;139(16):5998-6007. doi: 10.1021/jacs.7b02388. Epub 2017 Apr 12.

Hydroheteroarylation of Unactivated Alkenes Using N-Methoxyheteroarenium Salts.

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Department of Chemistry, Yale University , New Haven, Connecticut 06520, United States.
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Swarthmore College , Swarthmore, Pennsylvania 19081, United States.
Department of Pharmacology, Yale School of Medicine , New Haven, Connecticut 06520, United States.


We report the first reductive coupling of unactivated alkenes with N-methoxy pyridazinium, imidazolium, quinolinium, and isoquinolinium salts under hydrogen atom transfer (HAT) conditions, and an expanded scope for the coupling of alkenes with N-methoxy pyridinium salts. N-Methoxy pyridazinium, imidazolium, quinolinium, and isoquinolinium salts are accessible in 1-2 steps from the commercial arenes or arene N-oxides (25-99%). N-Methoxy imidazolium salts are accessible in three steps from commercial amines (50-85%). In total 36 discrete methoxyheteroarenium salts bearing electron-donating, electron-withdrawing, alkyl, aryl, halogen, and haloalkyl substituents were prepared (several in multigram quantities) and coupled with 38 different alkenes. The transformations proceed under neutral conditions at ambient temperature, provide monoalkylation products exclusively, and form a single alkene addition regioisomer. Preparatively useful and complementary site selectivities in the addition of secondary and tertiary radicals to pyidinium salts are documented: harder secondary radicals favor C-2 addition (2->10:1), while softer tertiary radicals favor bond formation to C-4 (4.7->29:1). A diene possessing a 1,2-disubstituted and 2,2-disubstituted alkene undergoes hydropyridylation at the latter exclusively (61%) suggesting useful site selectivities can be obtained in polyene substrates. The methoxypyridinium salts can also be employed in dehydrogenative arylation, borono-Minisci, and tandem arylation processes. Mechanistic studies support the involvement of a radical process.


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