Selective Divergent Synthesis of Indanols, Indanones, and Indenes via Acid-Mediated Cyclization of ( Z)- and ( E)-(2-Stilbenyl)methanols and Its Application for the Synthesis of Paucifloral F Derivatives

J Org Chem. 2018 Nov 2;83(21):13184-13210. doi: 10.1021/acs.joc.8b01921. Epub 2018 Oct 22.


Starting from bromo/iodobenzaldehyde derivatives, the corresponding ( Z)- and ( E)-(2-stilbenyl)methanols could be prepared in 2-5 steps via Pd-catalyzed cross-coupling reactions (Sonogashira and Heck reactions) followed by aryllithium/aryl Grignard addition. For the ( E)-stilbenes, subsequent acid-mediated cyclization using p-TsOH immobilized on silica (PTS-Si) at low temperatures furnished the 2,3- trans-1-indanols with complete stereocontrol at the C2-C3. Further oxidization of the alcohol provided the indanones, which are structurally related to the natural product paucifloral F. At higher temperatures, 1,2- and 2,3-disubstituted indenes could be selectively prepared in good to excellent yields. On the other hand, the ( Z)-stilbenes, under similar conditions (PTS-Si), did not give the indanols; only the 1,2-disubstituted indenes could be obtained. To gain further insights into the stereochemistry at C2-C3 for the ( Z)-stilbenes, hydride or azide was employed as a nucleophile; the corresponding indane products were obtained with the cis stereochemistry at the C2-C3. Thus, the ( Z)- or ( E)-olefin geometry of the substrate directed the stereoselective indanyl cyclization to furnish the cis or trans at the C2-C3 ring junction, respectively, while reaction conditions controlled the selectivity of the product types.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't