The intramolecular asymmetric cyclization of aldehydes has been accomplished using singly occupied molecular orbital (SOMO) catalysis. Selective oxidation of chiral enamines (formed by the condensation of an aldehyde and a secondary aminecatalyst) leads to the formation of a 3π-electron radical species. These chiral SOMO-activated radical cations undergo enantioselective cyclization with an array of pendent allylsilanes thus efficiently providing a new approach to the construction of five-, six- and seven-membered carbocycles and heterocycles.
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