4 years ago

The Reactivity of Benzyl Lithium Species is Regulated by Intermediate Structures

The Reactivity of Benzyl Lithium Species is Regulated by Intermediate Structures
Carsten Strohmann, Ulrike Kroesen, Lena Knauer
The reaction of benzyl lithiums is an important aspect in organic and organometallic synthesis. Reported herein are detailed insights into the reactivity of benzyl lithiums as regulated by intermediate structures. By discussing the carbometalation of allylamines and the reaction of the formed benzyl-lithium compounds with electrophiles, the influence of the metal as well as the solvent on the electronic structure of the intermediate is described. This molecular structure strongly influences the reactivity of these intermediates. By choosing the appropriate reaction conditions, the regioselectivity of reactions with electrophiles can be regulated. With trimethylchlorosilane in n-pentane a selective reaction at the para-position takes place. In contrast, selective reaction at the benzylic position, with trimethylchlorostannane in tetrahydrofuran (THF) as a solvent, is accomplished. A benzyl-lithium complex, with non-equivalent environments for its two lithium centers, leads to unexpected regioselective reactions with electrophiles (E+) at the para-position. By changing the solvent to tetrahydrofuran, a monomer is formed and electrophiles react at the benzylic position.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1002/anie.201702377

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