Scalable flow method yields novel results

Flow reactor specialist Uniqsis reports how researchers at Lilly S.A research centre in Spain have developed a novel continuous flow approach for the Wadsworth–Emmons cyclopropanation of alkyl-substituted chiral epoxides into chiral cyclopropane carboxylic acids.

Employing a FlowSyn continuous flow reactor and binary pump in a custom set-up, the researchers developed a new flow process which circumvented the risks associated with the high temperature and pressure required, and the highly volatile nature of the epoxide starting material.

Additionally, the researchers reported that the FlowSyn flow reactor offered increased efficiency, as the reduced headspace helps maintain a higher concentration of the low-boiling-point reactants in the liquid phase leading to enhanced reactivity, contrary to the use of sealed vessels in batch.

Using the described approach the researchers coupled their cyclopropane formation process with in-line workup and hydrolysis transformations to yield the desired enantiomerically pure cyclopropane carboxylic acids in good yields up to the 100g scale. To read this paper in full, click here.

Since 2007, Uniqsis has specialised in the design and supply of mesoscale continuous flow chemistry systems for a wide range of applications in chemical and pharmaceutical research. The company’s aim is to make flow chemistry easily accessible to both novices and experienced users.

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