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Walia M , Teijaro CN , Gardner A , Tran T , Kang J , Zhao S , O'Connor SE , Courdavault V , Andrade RB
Synthesis of (-)-Melodinine K: A Case Study of Efficiency in Natural Product Synthesis
J Nat Prod. 2020 Aug 28;83(8) :2425-2433
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Efficiency is a key organizing principle in modern natural product synthesis. Practical criteria include time, cost, and effort expended to synthesize the target, which tracks with step-count and scale. The execution of a natural product synthesis, that is, the sum and identity of each reaction employed therein, falls along a continuum of chemical (abiotic) synthesis on one extreme, followed by the hybrid chemoenzymatic approach, and ultimately biological (biosynthesis) on the other, acknowledging the first synthesis belongs to Nature. Starting materials also span a continuum of structural complexity approaching the target with constituent elements on one extreme, followed by petroleum-derived and "chiral pool" building blocks, and complex natural products (i.e., semisynthesis) on the other. Herein, we detail our approach toward realizing the first synthesis of (-)-melodinine K, a complex bis-indole alkaloid. The total syntheses of monomers (-)-tabersonine and (-)-16-methoxytabersonine employing our domino Michael/Mannich annulation is described. Isolation of (-)-tabersonine from Voacanga africana and strategic biotransformation with tabersonine 16-hydroxylase for site-specific C-H oxidation enabled a scalable route. The Polonovski-Potier reaction was employed in biomimetic fragment coupling. Subsequent manipulations delivered the target. We conclude with a discussion of efficiency in natural products synthesis and how chemical and biological technologies define the synthetic frontier.
1520-6025 Walia, Manish Teijaro, Christiana N Gardner, Alex Tran, Thi Kang, Jinfeng Zhao, Senzhi O'Connor, Sarah E Orcid: 0000-0003-0356-6213 Courdavault, Vincent Andrade, Rodrigo B Orcid: 0000-0002-4554-8323 Journal Article United States J Nat Prod. 2020 Aug 28;83(8):2425-2433. doi: 10.1021/acs.jnatprod.0c00310. Epub 2020 Jul 29.