A Biologically Inspired CuI/Topaquinone-Like Co-Catalytic System for the Highly Atom-Economical Aerobic Oxidation of Primary Amines to Imines



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Acting together: Low catalytic amounts of CuI and topaquinone-like catalyst 1ox (see scheme) are sufficient to activate the α-C[BOND]H bond of primary amines, which are converted into alkylated imines under ambient conditions. This atom-economical process tolerates the presence of various reactive functional groups and allows selective cross-coupling of two amines.