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Double Diels−Alder Reactions of Linear Conjugated Tetraenes

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journal contribution
posted on 18.02.2005, 00:00 authored by Craig I. Turner, Michael N. Paddon-Row, Anthony C. Willis, Michael S. Sherburn
Linear conjugated tetraenes are shown to participate effectively as bis-dienes in sequences involving either two intermolecular Diels−Alder reactions or an intramolecular followed by an intermolecular Diels−Alder reaction. Thus, simple tetraenol 1 is transformed into tetracyclic products 5, 6, and 9 in high yielding and highly stereoselective sequences with maleic anhydride involving the formation of three rings, four C−C bonds and one C−O bond, and eight stereocenters. In the latter case, the one-pot reaction protocol is very simple, and furnishes a single diastereoisomeric product in essentially quantitative yield. Linear conjugated tetraenes exhibit complete terminal site selectivity in reactions with dienophiles and computational investigations reveal that two discrete π-conjugative interactions are the origin of this unexpected reactivity. B3LYP/6-31G(d) transition structures also allow an explanation of unexpectedly high π-diastereofacial selectivities witnessed during these transformations, through the identification of preferred C1−C* diene conformations and nonbonded interactions. These new experimental and computational findings encourage the use of linear conjugated polyenes in domino sequences.