Anaerobic Hydroxylation of C(sp3)–H Bonds Enabled by the Synergistic Nature of Photoexcited Nitroarenes

20 January 2023, Version 2
This content is a preprint and has not undergone peer review at the time of posting.


A photoexcited nitroarene-mediated, anaerobic C–H hydroxylation of aliphatic systems is reported. The success of this reaction is due to the bifunctional nature of the photoexcited nitroarenes, which serve as the C–H bond activator and the oxygen atom source. Compared to previous methods, this approach is cost and atom economical due to the commercial availability of the nitroarene, the sole mediator of the reaction. Owing to the anaerobic conditions of the transformation, a noteworthy expansion in substrate scope can be obtained compared to prior reports. Mechanistic studies support that the photoexcited nitroarenes engage in successive hydrogen atom transfer and radical recombination events with hydrocarbons, leading to N-arylhydroxylamine ether intermediates. Spontaneous fragmentation of these intermediates leads to the key oxygen atom transfer products.


C–H Hydroxylation
C–H Functionalization

Supplementary materials

Supporting Information
Experimental details, optimization studies, characterization data, and NMR spectra (PDF).


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