Synthesis 2007(8): 1209-1213  
DOI: 10.1055/s-2007-965972
© Georg Thieme Verlag Stuttgart · New York

Synthesis of Substituted Tetrahydropyrans via Intermolecular Reactions of δ-Halocarbanions with Aldehydes

Michał Barbasiewicz, Aneta Brud, Mieczysław Mąkosza*
Institute of Organic Chemistry, Polish Academy of Sciences, ul. Kasprzaka 44/52, P. O. Box 58, 01-224 Warsaw 42, Poland
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Further Information

Publication History

Received 4 January 2007
Publication Date:
28 February 2007 (online)


Intramolecular substitution in δ-halocarbanions leading to cyclobutanes is a relatively slow process, thus they readily add to carbonyl groups; the thus-produced anionic adducts cyclize to tetrahydropyran derivatives. A simple mechanistic discussion, optimization of the reaction conditions, and scope of the reaction is presented.


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Fedoryński M., manuscript in preparation.


The behavior of 1a and 1b without an electrophile under basic conditions [t-BuOK (2 equiv), THF, -50 °C or 0 °C, 1 h] revealed that, in contrast to γ-halocarbanions, intramolecular substitution in δ-halocarbanions leading to cyclobutanes is a slow process disturbed by competitive elimination and oligomerization reactions.


The ratio of the diastereomers of 2a remains almost constant, in the range 1:0.55-1:0.70 (erythro/threo, according to 1H NMR), during the course of the reaction.


In an independent experiment we performed the reaction of PhCHO (1 mmol), 4-MeOC6H4CHO (1 mmol), and 1b (1 mmol) under standard conditions to evaluate the effect of the relative electrophilicity of aldehydes. This experiment gave an approximately 1: 1 mixture of 3a and 3b (according to 1H NMR of the crude reaction mixture), leading to the conclusion that complete equilibration of adduct 2a with 4-MeOC6H4CHO in the aldol dissociation-addition sequence should lead to an equimolar mixture of 3a and 3b.


Reaction of 1c with benzaldehyde (-40 °C, 1 h) led to a mixture of the expected product 3f and uncyclized aldol-type adduct 2f (according to 1H NMR analysis of the crude reaction mixture). To force the cyclization process the temperature was increased to -25 °C. Similar behavior was observed for analogous reactions of γ-halocarbanions: an aldol-type adduct of 3-chloropropyl phenyl sulfone carbanion and benzaldehyde cyclizes much faster to the tetrahydrofuran derivative than its ester or cyano congeners: Barbasiewicz M., Mąkosza M., unpublished results.


Probably due to the less favorable equilibrium of addition of stabilized enolate of ketone to the carbonyl group under these conditions, as compared to other less stabilized carbanions, see ref. 2 for details. The only isolable compound was the product of reaction of the expected tetrahydropyran derivative with the second molecule of aldehyde and/or its subsequent transformations (yield ˜20%).