The quaternary stereocentre — carbon atoms bonded to four distinct carbon substituents — is a common structural motif in many natural products and pharmaceuticals. The construction of such compounds in an enantioselective fashion remains a formidable challenge to synthetic organic chemists. In this manuscript, the authors report a catalytic and enantioselective intermolecular Heck-type reaction that provides direct access to quaternary all-carbon-substituted β-, γ-, δ-, ε- or ζ-aryl carbonyl compounds. The described method is flexible, allowing access to diverse building blocks containing an enantiomerically enriched quaternary centre.
- Catalysis marches on (News & Views p324, doi: 10.1038/nature13225)
- Enantioselective construction of remote quaternary stereocentres (Article p340, doi: 10.1038/nature13231)
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