Synthesis of 4-substituted-3(2H)-furanones with novel luminescence properties

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Moloney, Harold
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University College Cork
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The objective of this project was to prepare a range of 4-substituted 3-(2H)-furanones, and to investigate the relationship between their molecular structures and photoluminescence properties. The effects of substituents and conjugated linker unit were also investigated. After generation of the key 3(2H)-furanone heterocycle, extension of the conjugated framework at the C-4 position was achieved through Pd(0)-catalysed coupling reactions. Chapter one of the thesis comprises a review of the relavent literature and is split into three sections. These include information about the prevalence of 3-(2H)-furanones as natural products and synthetic routes to 3-(2H)-furanones in general. The synthetic routes are divided according to the synthetic precursor employed. The final section of chapter one outlines the fundamental principles and application of photoluminescence to organic compounds in general. Chapter two contains the results of the research achieved in the course of this work and a discussion of the findings. Two routes were successfully employed to generate 4-unsubstituted 3-(2H)-furanone moieties: (i) base induced cyclisation of hydroxyenones and (ii) isoxazole chemistry. A number of methods which proved ineffective in the production of furanones with the desired substitution pattern are also detailed. The majority of this study was focused on the introduction of substituents at the C-4 position of the 3-(2H)-furanone ring. This was achieved through the use of Sonogashira and Suzuki cross coupling protocols for Pd(0) catalysed C-C bond formation. The further functionalisation of some compounds was performed using transfer hydrogenation and “click chemistry” methodologies. Finally, the photophysical properties of 3-(2H)-furanones prepared in this project are discussed and the effect of substitution patterns in a complementary “push push” and “push pull” manner have also been investigated. All the experimental data and details of the synthetic methods employed, for the compounds prepared during the course of this research is contained in chapter three together with the spectroscopic and analytical properties of the compounds prepared.
Organic synthesis , Sonogashira , Suzuki , Fluorescence , Palladium
Moloney, H. 2014. Synthesis of 4-substituted-3(2H)-furanones with novel luminescence properties. PhD Thesis, University College Cork.