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Keywords:

  • dendrimers;
  • multicomponent reactions;
  • olefin cross-metathesis;
  • Passerini reactions;
  • renewable resources
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

The combination of the Passerini reaction and olefin cross-metathesis is shown to be a very useful approach for the divergent synthesis of dendrimers. Castor oil-derived platform chemicals, such as 10-undecenoic acid and 10-undecenal, are reacted in a Passerini reaction with an unsaturated isocyanide to obtain a core unit having three terminal double bonds. Subsequent olefin cross-metathesis with tert-butyl acrylate, followed by hydrogenation of the double bonds and hydrolysis of the tert-butyl ester, leads to an active core unit bearing three carboxylic acid groups as reactive sites. Iterative steps of the Passerini reaction with 10-undecenal and 10-isocyanodec-1-ene for branching, and olefin cross-metathesis with tert-butyl acrylate, followed by hydrogenation and hydrolysis allow the synthesis of a third-generation dendrimer. All steps of the synthesis are carefully characterized by NMR, GPC, MS, and IR.