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Concept: Functional groups


Selective catalytic synthesis of Z-olefins has been challenging. Here we describe a method to produce 1,2-disubstituted olefins in high Z selectivity via reductive cross-coupling of alkyl halides with terminal arylalkynes . The method employs inexpensive and non-toxic catalyst (iron(II) bromide) and reductant (zinc). The substrate scope encompasses primary, secondary, and tertiary alkyl halides, and the reaction tolerates a large number of functional groups. The utility of the method is demonstrated in the synthesis of several pharmaceutically relevant molecules. Mechanistic study suggests that the reaction proceeds through an iron-catalyzed anti-selective carbozincation pathway.

Concepts: Chemical reaction, Functional group, Alkene, Functional groups, Alkane, Hydrohalogenation


In this study, a validated method using a thermal desorber combined with a gas chromatograph coupled to mass spectrometry was used to identify the volatile organic compounds released during decomposition of 6 human and 26 animal remains in a laboratory environment during a period of 6 months. 452 compounds were identified. Among them a human specific marker was sought using principle component analysis. We found a combination of 8 compounds (ethyl propionate, propyl propionate, propyl butyrate, ethyl pentanoate, pyridine, diethyl disulfide, methyl(methylthio)ethyl disulfide and 3-methylthio-1-propanol) that led to the distinction of human and pig remains from other animal remains. Furthermore, it was possible to separate the pig remains from human remains based on 5 esters (3-methylbutyl pentanoate, 3-methylbutyl 3-methylbutyrate, 3-methylbutyl 2-methylbutyrate, butyl pentanoate and propyl hexanoate). Further research in the field with full bodies has to corroborate these results and search for one or more human specific markers. These markers would allow a more efficiently training of cadaver dogs or portable detection devices could be developed.

Concepts: Functional groups, Volatile organic compound, Alkyl, Ethyl butyrate


Ring-opening polymerization of lactones is a versatile approach to generate well-defined functional polyesters. Typical ring-opening catalysts are subject to a trade-off between rate and selectivity. Here we describe an effective catalytic system combining alkoxides with thioureas that catalyses rapid and selective ring-opening polymerizations. Deprotonation of thioureas by sodium, potassium or imidazolium alkoxides generates a hydrogen-bonded alcohol adduct of the thiourea anion (thioimidate). The ring-opening polymerization of L-lactide mediated by these alcohol-bonded thioimidates yields highly isotactic polylactide with fast kinetics and living polymerization behaviour, as evidenced by narrow molecular weight distributions (Mw/Mn < 1.1), chain extension experiments and minimal transesterifications. Computational studies indicate a bifunctional catalytic mechanism whereby the thioimidate activates the carbonyl of the monomer and the alcohol initiator/chain end to effect the selective ring-opening of lactones and carbonates. The high selectivity of the catalyst towards monomer propagation over transesterification is attributed to a selective activation of monomer over polymer chains.

Concepts: Hydrogen, Catalysis, Polymer, Polymer chemistry, Monomer, Functional groups, Enzyme catalysis, Polymerization


Poppers are volatile alkyl nitrite compounds that are inhaled to enhance sexual experience and for their psychoactive effects. A less well-known side effect is foveal maculopathy, which has emerged following changes in their chemical composition. It is unclear if certain individuals are more susceptible to retinal damage or if there is a relationship between pattern of inhalation and brands used.

Concepts: Functional groups, Inhalant, Alkyl nitrites


The total synthesis of the Lycopodium alkaloid lyconadin A was accomplished and it was applied to the total syntheses of the related congeners, lyconadins B, and C. Lyconadin A has attracted attention as a challenging target for total synthesis due to the unprecedented pentacyclic skeleton. Our synthesis of lyconadin A features a facile construction of the highly fused tetracyclic skeleton through a combination of an aza-Prins reaction and an electrocyclic ring opening followed by a formation of a C-N bond. Transformation of the bromoalkene moiety of the tetracycle to a key enone intermediate was extensively investigated, and three methods via sulfide, oxime, or azide intermediates were established. A pyridone ring was constructed from the key enone interme-diate to complete the synthesis of lyconadin A. A dihydropyridone ring could also be formed from the same enone intermediate, leading to a synthesis of lyconadin B. Establishment of the conditions for an electrocyclic ring opening without formation of the C-N bond resulted in completion of the total synthesis of lyconadin C.

Concepts: Chemical reaction, Functional group, Total synthesis, Paclitaxel total synthesis, Chemical synthesis, Rational number, Functional groups, Reserpine


An investigation of the intramolecular cyclopropanation reactions of α-diazo-β-ketonitriles is reported. These studies reveal that α-diazo-β-ketonitriles exhibit unique reactivity in their ability to undergo arene cyclopropanation reactions; other similar acceptor-acceptor-substituted diazo substrates instead produce mixtures of C-H insertion and dimerization products. α-Diazo-β-ketonitriles also undergo highly efficient intramolecular cyclopropanation of tri- and tetrasubstituted alkenes. In addition, the α-cyano-α-ketocyclopropane products are demonstrated to serve as substrates for SN2, SN2', and aldehyde cycloaddition reactions.

Concepts: Alkyne, Alkene, Functional groups, Cycloaddition, Aldehyde, Wittig reaction, Elimination reaction, Cyclopropane


The borylation of cyclopropanes catalyzed by the combination of (η6-mes)IrBpin3 or [Ir(COD)OMe]2 and a phenanthroline derivative is reported. The borylation occurs selectively at the methylene C-H bonds of the cyclopropane ring over methine or methyl C-H bonds. High diasteroselectivities were observed from reactions catalyzed by the combination of iridium and 2,9-Me2phenanthroline. The cyclopropylboronate esters that are generated are versatile synthetic intermediates that can be converted to trifluoroborate salts, boronic acids, cyclopropylarenes, cyclopropylamines, and cyclopropanols.

Concepts: Acid, Ammonia, Acetic acid, Functional groups, Cyclopropane


Nitroolefin is a common and versatile reagent, synthesis of which from olefin is generally limited by the formation of mixture of cis- and trans- compounds. Here we report that silver nitrite (AgNO2) along with TEMPO can promote the regio- and stereoselective nitration of a broad range of olefins. This work discloses a new and efficient approach wherein starting from olefin, nitroalkane radical formation and subsequent transformations lead to the desired nitroolefin in a stereoselective manner.

Concepts: Amine, Functional group, Alkene, Functional groups, Silver, Aldehyde, Nitro compound, Ozone


A formal total synthesis of the spiroketal containing cytotoxic myxobacteria metabolite spirangien A (1) is described. The approach utilizes a late introduction of the C20 alcohol that mirrors the biosynthesis of this compound. The key steps involved a high yielding cross metathesis reaction between enone 6 and alkene 7 to give E-enone 4 and a Mn-catalyzed conjugate reduction α-oxidation reaction to introduce the C20 hydroxyl group. Acid treatment of the α-hydroxyketone 4 gave spiroketal 19 which was converted into known spirangien A (1) advanced intermediate spiroketal 3.

Concepts: Alcohol, Functional group, Total synthesis, Olefin metathesis, Functional groups, Richard R. Schrock, Hydroxyl, Alkane metathesis


The objective of the present research was to ensure safety during oral administration of medications to dysphagia patients, by preparing fast disintegrating films (FDF) containing anastrozole (ANS) which disintegrate rapidly when placed on the tongue. Films were prepared by solvent-casting method using various polymers such as hydroxyl propyl methyl cellulose (HPMC E5 LV), hydroxy propyl cellulose (HPC), poly vinyl alcohol (PVA) and sodium alginate (Na Alginate). Among the formulations examined, film prepared using HPMC E5 LV (F1) exhibited shorter disintegration time (15 sec) with satisfactory mechanical properties. Fourier transformer infrared (FTIR) & differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) analysis revealed no chemical incompatibility between drug and excipients used in the formulation. Surface morphology revealed even distribution of ANS in the film. Dissolution of drug from F1 formulation was rapid with more than 90% drug release in 240 sec. Pharmacokinetic parameters showed no statistical difference between F1 (test) and drug solution (control) indicating comparable plasma level-time profiles. The film showed an excellent stability for 24 weeks when stored at refrigerated temperature (2-8°C). These findings suggest that the fast disintegrating film as a promising candidate for delivery of ANS in dysphagic patients.

Concepts: Pharmacology, Polymer, Cell wall, Functional groups, Differential scanning calorimetry, E number, Excipients, Disintegration