Merging supramolecular catalysis and aminocatalysis: amino-appended β-cyclodextrins (ACDs) as efficient and recyclable supramolecular catalysts for the synthesis of tetraketones†
Well-designed amino-appended β-cyclodextrins (ACDs) with an amino side chain of different lengths at the primary face of β-CD were synthesized and employed in the catalytic synthesis of a series of tetraketones as supramolecular catalysts in water for the first time. Yields of 58–97% were obtained with up to 30 examples of substrate. The catalyst could be recycled easily, while a 92% yield and 84% rate of catalyst recovery could be achieved after 8 cycles of catalyst recycling. Moreover, a catalytic mechanism merging supramolecular catalysis and aminocatalysis could be proposed through detailed 1D and 2D NMR, ESI-MS and Job plot analyses. This protocol retained the promising characteristics of ambient temperature, green medium, simple operation, broad substrate scope, excellent yields, superb catalyst recycling performance and unique catalytic mechanism.