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Sinéad E. Milner, Thomas S. Moody and Anita R. Maguire Biocatalytic Approaches to the Henry (Nitroaldol) Reaction European Journal of Organic Chemistry 2012

Article first published online: 12 APR 2012 | DOI: 10.1002/ejoc.201101840

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Enantiopure β-nitro alcohols are key chiral pool intermediates for the synthesis of a wide array of bioactive molecules. Methods to gain access to these valuable synthons include organo-, transition metal- and bio-catalysis. In recent years biocatalytic methods have gained momentum in this area. This microreview details these advances, which principally include a direct enzyme-catalysed C–C bond formation or enzyme-mediated resolution of the products of the Henry reaction. This approach is reviewed in detail for the first time.

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