A highly efficient and practical method for obtaining α,β-epoxy ketones with high optical purities was developed. The chiral lanthanum complex self-organized in situ from lanthanum triisopropoxide, (R)-BINOL, triarylphosphine oxide, and alkyl hydroperoxide (1:1:1:1) was found to catalyze the epoxidation of α,β-unsaturated ketones with tert-butyl hydroperoxide or cumene hydroperoxide at room temperature to give the corresponding epoxy ketones in high enantioselectivities (up to >99% enantiomeric excess (ee)). A remarkably high asymmetric amplification, a positive nonlinear effect, was observed in the epoxidation of chalcone, which strongly suggests the formation of a dinuclear peroxide-involved p-complex as the active catalyst.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Analytical Chemistry
- Drug Discovery
- Organic Chemistry