Structures of isopropylidene nucleoside derivatives: implications for ribose ring flexibility under external cyclic constraints

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Crystal structures of six isopropylidene nucleoside derivatives are described. The results show that, under external cyclic constraints, the ribose assumes a variety of unusual conformations. In those compounds which possess a base-to-sugar cyclization through the C(4′) atom, the furanose pucker is predominantly C(4′)-endo, O(4′)-exo. The possible relevance of the sulphur geometry in two of the compounds to certain structural aspects of the action of the enzyme thymidylate synthetase is also pointed out.