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A Theoretical Study of the Reaction between Cyclopentadiene and Protonated Imine Derivatives:  A Shift from a Concerted to a Stepwise Molecular Mechanism

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journal contribution
posted on 16.08.2001, 00:00 by Luis R. Domingo, Mónica Oliva, Juan Andrés
The reaction between cyclopentadiene and protonated pyridine-2-carboxaldehyde imine derivatives has been studied by using Hartree−Fock (HF) and B3LYP methods together with the 6-31G* basis set. The molecular mechanism is stepwise along an inverted energy profile. This results from the protonation on both nitrogen atoms of the imine group and the pyridine framework. The first step corresponds to the nucleophilic attack of cyclopentadiene on the electron-poor carbon atom of the iminium cation group to give an acyclic cation intermediate, and the second step is associated with the ring closure of this intermediate via the formation of a C−N single bond yielding the final cycloadduct. Two reactive channels have been characterized corresponding to the endo and exo approach modes of the cyclopentadiene to the iminium cation. The role of the pyridium cation substituent and the nitrogen position (ortho, meta, and para) along the reaction pathway has been also considered. Solvent effects (dichloromethane) by means of a continuum model have been taken into account to model the experimental environment.