Photoinduced synthesis of 2-sulfonylacetonitriles with the insertion of sulfur dioxide under ultraviolet irradiation†
Metal-free insertion of sulfur dioxide with aryl iodides and 3-azido-2-methylbut-3-en-2-ol under ultraviolet irradiation at room temperature is achieved, giving rise to 2-(arylsulfonyl)acetonitriles in moderate to good yields. Alkyl iodide is also workable under these conditions. This transformation proceeds smoothly under mild conditions with a broad substrate scope. Various functional groups are compatible including amino, ester, halo, and trifluoromethyl groups. No metal catalyst or additive is needed during the reaction process. Mechanistic studies show that under ultraviolet irradiation, an aryl radical is generated in situ from aryl iodide, which undergoes subsequent sulfonylation via the insertion of sulfur dioxide leading to arylsulfonyl radical intermediates. Then the arylsulfonyl radical reacts with 3-azido-2-methylbut-3-en-2-ol giving rise to the corresponding 2-(arylsulfonyl)acetonitrile.
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