Metal-free base-mediated oxidative annulation cascades to 3-substituted-3-hydroxyoxindole and its 3-spirocyclic derivative†
A simple and efficient method was developed for the construction of the medicinally important 3-substituted-3-hydroxyoxindole and its 3-spirocyclic derivatives with readily available aniline derivatives as starting materials. This highly atom- and step-economical one-pot protocol was carried out under metal-free base-mediated conditions through a novel oxidative annulation strategy with oxygen as the oxidant. The key intermediates were isolated and confirmed. A reasonable reaction pathway was proposed and supported by the preliminary experiments, and the computational studies were carried out to understand the energetics of the key rearrangement reaction.