The synthesis of biologically important natural products which contain
acyclic or heterocyclic structures, starting from cyclitols, is described.
Stereoselective functionalization and subsequent regioselective ring
cleavage of cyclitol derivatives provides precursors for the synthesis of
a wide variety of natural products. The successful synthesis of acyclic
and heterocyclic natural products reveals the usefulness and importance of
cyclitols as novel chiral building blocks.
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