There is a pressing need, particularly in the field of drug discovery, for general methods that will enable direct coupling of tertiary alkyl frag-ments to (hetero)aryl halides. Herein a uniquely powerful and simple set of conditions for achieving this transformation with unparalleled generality and chemoselectivity is disclosed. This new protocol is placed in context with other recently reported methods, applied to simplify the routes of known bioactive building blocks molecules, and scaled up in both batch and flow. The role of pyridine additive as well as the mechanism of this reaction are interrogated through Cyclic Voltammetry studies, titration experiments, control reactions with Ni(0) and Ni(II)-complexes, and ligand optimization data. Those studies indicate that the formation of a BINAPNi(0) is minimized and the formation of an active pyridine-stabilized Ni(I) species are sustained during the reaction. Our preliminary mechanistic studies ruled out the involvement of Ni(0) species in this electrochemical cross-coupling, which is mediated by Ni(I) species via a Ni(I)-Ni(II)-Ni(III)-Ni(I) catalytic cycle.
Experimental procedures and characterization data