Esterification reactions from cyclic 1,3-diketones and alcohols are carried out in the presence of several Lewis acids. In particular, indium(III) triflate, In(OTf)3, iron(III) triflate, Fe-(OTf)3, copper(II) triflate, Cu(OTf)2, and silver(I) triflate, AgOTf, show high catalytic activities. These reactions proceed through the carbon-carbon bond cleavage by a retro-aldol reaction and were found to be highly regioselective even in the presence of other functional groups. This type of reaction can also be applied to the preparation of the keto esters during the synthesis of seratrodast, which is an antiasthmatic and eicosanoid antagonist.
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