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Direct Deamination of Primary Amines by Water To Produce Alcohols


  • This research was supported by the European Research Council under the FP7 framework, (ERC No 246837) and by the Kimmel Center for Molecular design. J.R.K. is a recipient of a Dean of Faculty Fellowship. D.M. is the holder of the Israel Matz Professorial Chair of Organic Chemistry.


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Just add water! The title reaction is catalyzed by an acridine-based pincer complex (1, see scheme). This one-step transformation uses water as the only reagent in the absence of additional bases, oxidants, or reductants. Cyclization of 1,4-diaminobutane and 1,6-diaminohexane catalyzed by 1 leads to the formation of pyrrolidine and azepane, respectively.