American Chemical Society
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Cyanide-Catalyzed Cyclizations via Aldimine Coupling

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posted on 2004-02-20, 00:00 authored by B. Jesse E. Reich, Aaron K. Justice, Brittany T. Beckstead, Joseph H. Reibenspies, Stephen A. Miller
Aldimine coupling (AIC) is the nitrogen analogue of the benzoin condensation and has been applied to dialdimines, providing the first examples of cyclizations effected by cyanide-catalyzed AIC. Sodium cyanide promoted the facile, intramolecular cyclization of several dialdimines in N,N-dimethylformamide, methanol, or methylene chloride/water (phase-transfer conditions) yielding a variety of six-membered heterocycles. Under aerobic conditions, an oxidative cyclization occurs to provide the diimine heterocycle. Oligomerization was observed with rigid dialdimines for which cyclization was precluded.