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Continuous Flow Synthesis of alpha-Halo Ketones: Building Blocks for Anti-retroviral Agents



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Chiral alpha-halo ketones derived from N-protected amino acids are key building blocks for the synthesis of HIV protease inhibitors such as atazanavir used in HAART combination therapy.

Kappe and De Souza have reported a continuous flow through route to these intermediates which utilises a tube-in-tube reactor to introduce diazomethane generated on demand into the reaction stream containing mixed anhydride derivatives of N-protected amino acids. The resulting alpha-diazo ketones are then decomposed with HCl or HBr to afford the corresponding alpha-halo ketones.

This process allows the safe generation, separation and use of diazomethane in a continuous integrated multi-step synthesis of important API intermediates.

Abstract Image

The development of a continuous flow process for the multistep synthesis of α-halo ketones starting from N-protected amino acids is described. The obtained α-halo ketones are chiral building blocks for the synthesis of HIV protease inhibitors, such as atazanavir and darunavir. The synthesis starts with the formation of a mixed anhydride in a first tubular reactor.

The anhydride is subsequently combined with anhydrous diazomethane in a tube-in-tube reactor. The tube-in-tube reactor consists of an inner tube, made from a gas-permeable, hydrophobic material, enclosed in a thick-walled, impermeable outer tube. Diazomethane is generated in the inner tube in an aqueous medium, and anhydrous diazomethane subsequently diffuses through the permeable membrane into the outer chamber.

The α-diazo ketone is produced from the mixed anhydride and diazomethane in the outer chamber, and the resulting diazo ketone is finally converted to the halo ketone with anhydrous ethereal hydrogen halide.

This method eliminates the need to store, transport, or handle diazomethane and produces α-halo ketone building blocks in a multistep system without racemization in excellent yields. A fully continuous process allowed the synthesis of 1.84 g of α-chloro ketone from the respective N-protected amino acid within ∼4.5 h (87% yield).

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DR ANTHONY MELVIN CRASTO, Born in Mumbai in 1964 and graduated from Mumbai University, Completed his Ph.D from ICT, 1991,Matunga, Mumbai, India, in Organic Chemistry, The thesis topic was Synthesis of Novel Pyrethroid Analogues, Currently he is working with AFRICURE PHARMA, ROW2TECH, CLEANCHEM LABS as ADVISOR, earlier assignment was with GLENMARK LIFE SCIENCES LTD, as CONSUlTANT, Retired from GLENMARK in Jan2022 Research Centre as Principal Scientist, Process Research (bulk actives) at Mahape, Navi Mumbai, India. Total Industry exp 32 plus yrs, Prior to joining Glenmark, he has worked with major multinationals like Hoechst Marion Roussel, now Sanofi, Searle India Ltd, now RPG lifesciences, etc. He has worked with notable scientists like Dr K Nagarajan, Dr Ralph Stapel, Prof S Seshadri, etc, He did custom synthesis for major multinationals in his career like BASF, Novartis, Sanofi, etc., He has worked in Discovery, Natural products, Bulk drugs, Generics, Intermediates, Fine chemicals, Neutraceuticals, GMP, Scaleups, etc, he is now helping millions, has 9 million plus hits on Google on all Organic chemistry websites. His friends call him Open superstar worlddrugtracker. His New Drug Approvals, Green Chemistry International, All about drugs, Eurekamoments, Organic spectroscopy international, etc in organic chemistry are some most read blogs He has hands on experience in initiation and developing novel routes for drug molecules and implementation them on commercial scale over a 32 PLUS year tenure till date Feb 2023, Around 35 plus products in his career. He has good knowledge of IPM, GMP, Regulatory aspects, he has several International patents published worldwide . He has good proficiency in Technology transfer, Spectroscopy, Stereochemistry, Synthesis, Polymorphism etc., He suffered a paralytic stroke/ Acute Transverse mylitis in Dec 2007 and is 90 %Paralysed, He is bound to a wheelchair, this seems to have injected feul in him to help chemists all around the world, he is more active than before and is pushing boundaries, He has 100 million plus hits on Google, 2.5 lakh plus connections on all networking sites, 100 Lakh plus views on dozen plus blogs, 227 countries, 7 continents, He makes himself available to all, contact him on +91 9323115463, email, Twitter, @amcrasto , He lives and will die for his family, 90% paralysis cannot kill his soul., Notably he has 38 lakh plus views on New Drug Approvals Blog in 227 countries...... , He appreciates the help he gets from one and all, Friends, Family, Glenmark, Readers, Wellwishers, Doctors, Drug authorities, His Contacts, Physiotherapist, etc He has total of 32 International and Indian awards

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