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Notable Effect of an Electron-Withdrawing Group at C3 on the Selective Formation of Alkylidenecyclobutanes in the Thermal Denitrogenation of 4-Spirocyclopropane-1-pyrazolines. Nonstatistical Dynamics Effects in the Denitrogenation Reactions

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journal contribution
posted on 2007-10-31, 00:00 authored by Masashi Hamaguchi, Masahiro Nakaishi, Toshikazu Nagai, Takeshi Nakamura, Manabu Abe
A detailed study of the thermal denitrogenation of 3-carbomethoxy-substituted 4-spirocyclopropane-1-pyrazolines 6 was conducted. Alkylidenecyclobutane derivatives 7 were selectively formed in a stereospecific manner. Unrestricted density functional calculations for a 1-pyrazoline 10a indicated that the concerted cleavage of two C−N bonds is the energetically favored process for the denitrogenation reaction to give the 2-spirocyclopropyl 1,3-diyl, followed by a conrotatory ring-closure process, which was calculated to be the energy minimum pathway, to afford a spiropentane derivative. The calculated energy minimum pathway is largely inconsistent with the experimental results observed for the denitrogenation of 6 and 10a. The contradiction between the experimental and standard computational results was solved by considering nonstatistical dynamics effects in the concerted denitrogenation reactions. Although the energy minimum pathway from the transition states of the concerted denitrogenation of the 3-carboalkoxy-substituted 1-pyrazolines involves generation of the corresponding 1,3-diradicals, many trajectory calculations using the Bohn−Oppenheimer molecular dynamics model from the transition state for the concerted denitrogenation led directly to the formation of alkylidenecyclobutanes at the UB3LYP/6-31G(d) level of theory.