A practical and scalable ortho-selective deuteration of aromatic aldehydes was accomplished by Pd-catalyzed hydrogen isotope exchange with deuterium oxide as an inexpensive deuterium source. The use of tert-leucine as a transient directing group facilitates the exchange, affording a wide range of ortho-deuterated aromatic aldehydes with deuterium incorporation up to 97%. The control experiments suggest that the addition of silver trifluoroacetate resists the unexpected reduction of Pd(II), while the theoretical study indicates a rapid reversible concerted metalation-deprotonation process.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Organic Chemistry