Organolithium reagents are often too unstable to use due to being highly reactive. This limits their application in organic synthesis. In this presentation, "Flash Chemistry makes Impossible Organolithium Chemistry Possible", Prof. Aiichiro Nagaki of Kyoto University discusses an approach to various synthetic reactions mediated by organolithium reagents based on flash chemistry, especially utilizing space-integration of the flow reactions.
Summarization of two types of space-reaction-integration will be of particular focus. Linear integration allows the subsequent generation of short-lived intermediates. Thus, the sequential introduction of substituents onto arenes has been achieved to synthesize highly functionalized compounds. In convergent integration, several different short-lived intermediates can be also generated separately and combined to create a target molecule. Only convergent integration can allow such a complicated reaction system to be used because the short-lived intermediates have different lifetimes. Therefore, space integration involving several short-lived organolithium species enables multi-step synthesis and enhances the power and speed of chemical synthesis. Moreover, transformations that cannot be performed in conventional batch reactors can be achieved in flow microreactors, enabling straightforward synthesis.
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