2,6-Diketopiperazines from amino acids, from solution-phase to solid-phase organic synthesis.
ABSTRACT A method to prepare 1,3-disubstituted 2,6-diketopiperazines (2,6-DKP) as useful heterocyclic library scaffolds in the search of new leads for drug discovery is described. The method can be used in solution-phase and solid-phase conditions. In the key step of the synthesis, the imido portion of the new molecule is formed in solution through intramolecular cyclization, under basic conditions, of a secondary amide nitrogen on a benzyl ester. A Wang resin carboxylic ester is used as the acylating agent under solid-phase conditions, allowing the cyclization to take place with simultaneous cleavage of the product from the resin ("cyclocleavage"). The synthetic method worked well with several couples of amino acids, independently from their configuration, and was used for the parallel synthesis of a series of fully characterized compounds. The use of iterative conditions in the solid phase (repeated addition of fresh solvent and potassium carbonate to the resin after filtering out the product-containing solution) allowed us to keep diastereoisomer content below the detection limit by HPLC and (1)H NMR (200 MHz).