NMR investigations on the proline-catalyzed aldehyde self-condensation: mannich mechanism, dienamine detection, and erosion of the aldol addition selectivity.

Summary of "NMR investigations on the proline-catalyzed aldehyde self-condensation: mannich mechanism, dienamine detection, and erosion of the aldol addition selectivity."

The proline-catalyzed self-condensation of aliphatic aldehydes in DMSO with varying amounts of catalyst was studied by in situ NMR spectroscopy. The reaction profiles and intermediates observed as well as deuteration studies reveal that the proline-catalyzed aldol addition and condensation are competing, but not consecutive, reaction pathways. In addition, the rate-determining step of the condensation is suggested to be the C-C bond formation. Our findings indicate the involvement of two catalyst molecules in the C-C bond formation of the aldol condensation, presumably by the activation of both the aldol acceptor and donor in a Mannich-type pathway. This mechanism is shown to be operative also in the oligomerization of acetaldehyde with high proline amounts, for which the first in situ detection of a proline-derived dienamine was accomplished. In addition, the diastereoselectivity of the aldol addition is evidenced to be time-dependent since it is undermined by the retro-aldolization and the competing irreversible aldol condensation; here NMR reaction profiles can be used as a tool for reaction optimization.


Institut für Organische Chemie, Universität Regensburg , Universitätsstr. 31, D-93053 Regensburg, Germany.

Journal Details

This article was published in the following journal.

Name: The Journal of organic chemistry
ISSN: 1520-6904
Pages: 3005-15


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Medical and Biotech [MESH] Definitions

Ketonic amines prepared from the condensation of a ketone with formaldehyde and ammonia or a primary or secondary amine. A Mannich base can act as the equivalent of an alpha,beta unsaturated ketone in synthesis or can be reduced to form physiologically active amino alcohols.

The first enzyme of the proline degradative pathway. It catalyzes the oxidation of proline to pyrroline-5-carboxylic acid in the presence of oxygen and water. The action is not reversible. The specific activity of proline oxidase increases with age. EC 1.5.3.-.

Enzymes that catalyze a reverse aldol condensation. A molecule containing a hydroxyl group and a carbonyl group is cleaved at a C-C bond to produce two smaller molecules (ALDEHYDES or KETONES). EC 4.1.2.

Protein domains that are enriched in PROLINE. The cyclical nature of proline causes the peptide bonds it forms to have a limited degree of conformational mobility. Therefore the presence of multiple prolines in close proximity to each other can convey a distinct conformational arrangement to a peptide chain.

A proline analog that acts as a stoichiometric replacement of proline. It causes the production of abnormal proteins with impaired biological activity.

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