Professor Heller and coworkers are engaged in the development of mild and chemoselective acylation reactions using carbonylazole-derived reagents. To that end, they have developed a suite of carbonylimidazole derivatives for facile and chemoselective esterification (MImC, etc.) and amidation (WImC) of carboxylic acids, in collaboration with Professor Richmond Sarpong. These transformations are greatly accelerated by mildly acidic pyridinium salts. In combination with catalytic quantities of DBU, these reagents also effect selective N-acylation of indoles and oxazolidinones in the presence of more reactive functional groups such as anilines, amides, and phenolates.
Heller Group Website