1,3-Dipolar Cycloadditions. Past and Future


  • Extended version of lectures given at the Chemists' Meeting in Vienna (Austria) October 1961, and at the Gordon Research Conference, New Hampton (U.S.A.), 1961.


In contrast to the very large number of special methods applicable to syntheses in the heterocyclic series, relatively few general methods are available. The 1,3-dipolar addition offers a remarkably wide range of utility in the synthesis of five-membered heterocycles. Here the “1,3-dipole”, which can only be represented by zwitterionic octet resonance structures, combines in a cycloaddition with a multiple bond system – the “dipolarophile” – to form an uncharged five-membered ring. Although numerous individual examples of this reaction were known, some even back in the nineteenth century, fruitful development of this synthetic principle has been achieved only in recent years.