Efficient and selective: An asymmetric nucleophilic glyoxylation has been achieved for the first time using a metalated glyoxylate aminonitrile derivative in Michael additions to nitroalkenes. After conversion of the aminonitrile back into the keto function with removal of the chiral auxiliary, the γ-nitro α-keto esters were available in good yields and excellent enantiomeric excesses (see scheme).
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