Gram-Scale Synthesis of Iejimalide B

Max-Planck-Institut für Kohlenforschung, 45470 Mülheim/Ruhr, Germany.
Chemistry - A European Journal (Impact Factor: 5.73). 06/2011; 17(25):6964-72. DOI: 10.1002/chem.201100178
Source: PubMed


Iejimalide B (2) is the most promising member of a small family of marine polyene macrolides endowed with remarkably selective activity against human cancer cell lines. As this product, however, is hardly available from the natural sources, a detailed evaluation requires the development of an efficient and practical synthetic approach. This challenge has now been met by adapting the first total synthesis of 2 previously reported by our group to the needs of high material throughput. Redesigning the access routes to the five required building blocks in combination with a careful optimization of the fragment coupling processes provided gram amounts of this valuable compound in a sequence of no more than 16 linear steps with an overall yield of about 7%. Key elements of the successful strategy include: i) three hydrostannylation processes of elaborate terminal alkynes with "lower order" stannyl cuprates, ii) a Brown allylation, a Noyori transfer hydrogenation, and a Marshall propargylation to set the chiral centers at C9, C17, C22 and C23, and iii) a modified Takai-Utimoto olefination for the preparation of the very labile skipped 1,4-diene flanking the ester group. The assembly process benefited from a particularly mild protocol for the Stille cross-coupling previously developed in this laboratory, which clearly outperformed the alternative Suzuki reaction in terms of yield and scalability. The 24-membered macrocyclic frame was forged by a remarkably selective ring-closing metathesis reaction (RCM), in which two out of the ten double bonds present in the cyclization precursor were selectively activated with the aid of a second-generation Grubbs catalyst.

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