A Microwave-Assisted Direct Heteroarylation of Ketones Using Transition Metal Catalysis

This article has been accepted and is currently in production


Heteroarylation introduces heteroaryl fragments to organic molecules. Despite the numerous available reactions reported for arylation via transition metal catalysis, the literature on direct heteroarylation is scarce. The presence of heteroatoms such as nitrogen, sulfur and oxygen often make heteroarylation a challenging research field due to catalyst poisoning, product decomposition and the rest. This protocol details a highly efficient direct α-C(sp3) heteroarylation of ketones under microwave irradiation. Key factors for successful heteroarylation include the use of XPhos Palladacycle Gen. 4 Catalyst, excess base to suppress side reactions and the high temperature and pressure achieved in a sealed reaction vial under microwave irradiation. The heteroarylation compounds prepared by this method were fully characterized by proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H NMR), carbon nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (13C NMR) and high-resolution mass spectrometry (HRMS). This methodology has several advantages over literature precedents including broad substrate scope, rapid reaction time, greener procedure and operational simplicity by eliminating the preparation of intermediates such as silyl enol ether. Possible applications for this protocol include, but are not limited to, diversity-oriented synthesis for the discovery of biologically active small molecules, domino synthesis for the preparation of natural products and ligand development for new transition metal catalytic systems.