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Electrocarboxylation of Aryl Epoxides with CO2 for the Facile and Selective Synthesis of β‐Hydroxy Acids

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A general and efficient method for the electroreductive carboxylation of aryl epoxides with CO2 has been developed to provide β-hydroxy acids. The method exhibited broad substrate scope, could be extended to cyclic ethers with larger rings, and proved to be a powerful approach to the late-stage carboxylation of natural product derivatives and drug molecules.


Abstract

Herein, an efficient and facile approach to valuable β-hydroxy acid derivatives from readily available aryl epoxides and CO2 with high chemo- and regioselectivity under mild and sustainable electrochemical conditions is described. This approach showed broad substrate scope and good functional-group compatibility. In addition to aryl epoxides, four- to six-membered aryl cyclic ethers could all be tolerated in the reaction to provide synthetically useful hydroxy acids with high efficiency. Further late-stage carboxylation of complex molecules and drug derivatives demonstrated its potential application in the pharmaceutical industry. Mechanistic studies disclosed possible reaction pathways.

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