Solid-phase synthesis of m-phenylene ethynylene heterosequence oligomers

Erin L. Elliott, Christian R. Ray, Stefan Kraft, Joseph R. Atkins, Jeffrey S. Moore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Both homo- and heterosequence m-phenylene ethynylene oligomers are synthesized using a conceptually simple iterative solid-phase strategy. Oligomers are attached to Merrifield's resin through a known triazene-type linkage. The phenylene ethynylene molecular backbone is constructed through a series of palladium-mediated cross-coupling reactions. The strategy employs two types of monomers that bear orthogonal reactivity, one being a monoprotected bisethynyl arene and the other being a 3-bromo-5-iodo arene. The catalyst conditions are tailored to the requirements of each monomer type. The monoprotected bisethynyl arene is coupled to the growing chain in 2 h at room temperature using a Pd(I) dimer precatalyst (tBusP-(Pd(μ-Cl)(μ- 2-methyl allyl)Pd)PtBu3) in conjunction with ZnBr2 and diisopropylamine. In alternate steps, the resin is deprotected in situ with TBAF and coupled to the 3-bromo-5-iodo arene using the iodo selective Pd(tri-2-furylphosphine)4 catalyst in conjunction with CuI and piperidine; this reaction is also completed in 2 h at room temperature. These cross-coupling events are alternated until an oligomer of the desired length is achieved. The oligomer is then cleaved from the resin using CH2I 2/I2 at 110 °C and purified using preparatory GPC. Using this method, a series of homo- and heterosequence oligomers up to 12 units in length in excellent yield and purity were synthesized on the 100 mg scale. Longer oligomers were attempted; however, deletion sequences were found in oligomers longer than 12 units.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5282-5290
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Organic Chemistry
Issue number14
StatePublished - Jul 7 2006

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Organic Chemistry


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