24/01/2013, by

Knowledge and Technology Transfer: A case of success

Strem Chemicals Inc. sells metal-free catalysts obtained through a new synthetic route developed at ICIQ

The compounds are effective catalysts for the functionalization of carbonyl compounds.

CSOL (Catalyst Selection and Optimization Laboratory), in collaboration with Prof Melchiorre, has developed a new synthetic route to obtain eight previously known cinchona alkaloid derivatives used as catalysts for a broad range of reactions.

ICIQ has filed a patent application for the new process, which has a much lower economic cost, allowing the commercialisation of the resulting compounds at a more competitive price.

Four of these compounds prepared through this route can be now purchased from Strem Chemicals Inc. at nearly half the price than other suppliers. The synthetic routes and results are published in the latest issue of Nature Protocols.

Functionalization of carbonyl compounds

These compounds are effective asymmetric metal-free catalysts able to stereoselectively functionalise hindered carbonyl compounds (simple ketones as well as α-branched substituted aldehydes and ketones and their α, β-unsaturated counterparts).

The use of these catalysts will help to obtain libraries of new organic compounds for the synthesis of biologically active compounds (pharmaceuticals and agrochemicals) as well as specialty materials.

CSOL (Catalytic Solutions) CSOL is a technology development unit integrated in the Institute of Chemical Research of Catalonia (ICIQ). It offers innovative, tailor-made catalytic solutions for homogeneous transformations, including enantioselective reactions. CSOL’s mission is to act as the link between ICIQ cutting-edge research and the industry, as well as developing ICIQ’s discoveries in catalysis into industrial applications with a comprehensive approach.

Reference: Nature Protocols 8, 325–344 (2013) doi:10.1038/nprot.2012.155

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