A practical method for enantioselective synthesis of all-carbon quaternary stereogenic centers through NHC-Cu-catalyzed conjugate additions of alkyl- and arylzinc reagents to beta-substituted cyclic enones.J Am Chem Soc. 2006 Jun 07; 128(22):7182-4.JA
We present the first examples of Cu-catalyzed enantioselective conjugate additions of alkyl- and arylzinc reagents to unactivated cyclic beta-substituted enones. Transformations are promoted in the presence of 2.5-15 mol % of a readily available chiral NHC-based Cu complex, affording the desired products bearing all-carbon quaternary stereogenic centers in 67-->98% yield and in up to 97% ee. Catalytic enantioselective reactions can be carried out on a benchtop, with undistilled solvent and commercially available (not further purified) Cu salts. Mechanistic models, accounting for the observed levels and trends in enantioselectivity are provided.