• Chemoenzymatic Total Synthesis of Morphine alkaloids: Synthesis of Dihydrocodeine and Hydrocodone via a Double Claisen Strategy and ent-Hydromorphone via an Oxidative Dearomatization/intramolecular [4+2] Cycloaddition

      Varghese, Vimal; Department of Chemistry (Brock University, 2015-01-15)
      This thesis describes the chemoenzymatic synthesis of three morphine alkaloids. The total synthesis of dihydrocodeine and hydrocodone was accomplished starting from bromobenzene in 16 and 17 steps, respectively. The key steps included a microbial oxidation of bromobenzene by E. coli JM109 (pDTG601A), a Kazmaier-Claisen rearrangement of glycinate ester to generate C-9 and C-14 stereo centers, a Johnson-Claisen rearrangement to set the C-13 quaternary center, and a C-10/C-11 ring closure via a Friedel-Crafts reaction. In addition, the total synthesis of ent-hydromorphone starting from β-bromoethylbenzene in 12 steps is also described. The key reactions included the enzymatic dihydroxylation of β-bromoethylbenzene to the corresponding cis-cyclohexadienediol, a Mitsunobu reaction, and an oxidative dearomatization followed by an intramolecular [4+2] cycloaddition.