Catalysis Letters

, Volume 146, Issue 8, pp 1429–1434 | Cite as

Enantioselective Morita–Baylis–Hillman Reaction of Acrylates with Nitrobenzaldehydes Promoted by the Bifunctional Ferrocene-Based Phosphinothiourea Organocatalysts

  • Chuang Li
  • Peng-Fei Ma
  • Yang Lei
  • Hui Chen
  • Shao-Yu Guan
  • Ru JiangEmail author
  • Wei-Ping ChenEmail author


A series of ferrocene-based bifunctional phosphinothiourea organocatalysts were synthesized and applied to the enantioselective Morita–Baylis–Hillman reaction of acrylates with nitrobenzaldehydes, giving the desired products in up to 99.7 % ee. The strong electron-withdrawing effect of nitro group and hydrogen bonding interactions between the thiourea moiety of catalyst and aldehyde might be crucial during the enantio-controlling process.

Graphical Abstract


Acrylates Ferrocene-based MBH reaction Nitrobenzaldehyde Phosphinothiourea 



We thank the National Natural Science Foundation of China (21472240, 21272271) for financial support.

Supplementary material

10562_2016_1759_MOESM1_ESM.doc (2.8 mb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 2868 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Medicinal Chemistry, School of PharmacyFourth Military Medical UniversityXi’anChina
  2. 2.Department of PharmacyThe 60th Central Hospital of the PLADaliChina

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