Organic carboxylate salt-enabled alternative synthetic routes for bio-functional cyclic carbonates and aliphatic polycarbonates†
Simple and efficient synthetic routes for functionalized cyclic carbonates are indispensable for the practical application of side-chain bio-functionalized aliphatic polycarbonates as biodegradable functional biomaterials. In this study, a six-membered cyclic carbonate with a triethylammonium carboxylate has been prepared in one step from 2,2-bis(methylol)propionic acid (bis-MPA). We have demonstrated the suitability of the organic carboxylate salt of the bis-MPA cyclic carbonate for esterification with alkyl bromides via the SN2 mechanism, leading to the formation of functionalized cyclic carbonate monomers. The esterification of the organic carboxylate salt proceeds efficiently when alkyl bromides with α-carbonyl, allyl, and benzyl groups are used. This approach enables a two-step synthesis of functionalized cyclic carbonates from bis-MPA. The organocatalyzed ring-opening polymerization of the resultant functionalized cyclic carbonates is effectively controlled, indicating that the synthetic process involving the organic carboxylate salt does not influence their polymerizability. The ether-functionalized aliphatic polycarbonates obtained from the organic carboxylate salt exhibit good antiplatelet properties, comparable to those of a previously developed blood-compatible aliphatic polycarbonate. The synthetic pathways exploiting organic carboxylate salts enable alternative shortcuts to functionalized cyclic carbonates from bis-MPA.