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We report a highly robust, general and stereoselective method for the synthesis of 3-(chloromethylene)oxindoles from alkyne-tethered carbamoyl chlorides using PdCl2(PhCN)2 as the catalyst. The transformation involves a stereo- and regioselective chloropalladation of an internal alkyne to generate a nucleophilic vinyl Pd(II) species, which then undergoes an intramolecular cross-coupling with a carbamoyl chloride. The reaction proceeds under mild conditions, is insensitive to the presence of moisture and air, and is readily scalable. The products obtained from this reaction are formed with >95:5 Z:E selectivity in nearly all cases and can be used to access biologically-relevant oxindole cores. Through combined experimental and computational studies, we provide insight into stereo- and regioselectivity of the chloropalladation step, as well as the mechanism for the C-C bond forming process. Calculations provide support for a mechanism involving oxidative addition into the carbamoyl chloride bond to generate a high valent Pd(IV) species, which then undergoes facile C-C reductive elimination to form the final product. Overall, the transformation constitutes a formal Pd(II)-catalyzed intramolecular alkyne chlorocarbamoylation reaction.
PMID: 27700076 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]