Visible Light-Mediated [2+2] Cycloaddition for the Synthesis of Azetidines via Energy Transfer



Due to the lack of synthetic methods for their synthesis, azetidines are an underrepresented class of nitrogen-containing heterocycles. Herein, we describe the development of a mild, general protocol for the synthesis of azetidines relying on a visible light-mediated [2+2] cycloaddition between oximes and olefins catalyzed by an iridium photocatalyst. This approach is characterized by its operational simplicity, low catalyst loadings and functional group tolerance. Mechanistic investigations suggest that a triplet energy transfer mechanism is operative.


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