ORGANIC CHEMISTRY: Native functionality in triple catalytic cross-coupling: sp3 C-H bonds as latent nucleophiles

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The use of sp3 C-H bonds—which are ubiquitous in organic molecules—as latent nucleophile equivalents for transition metal-catalyzed cross-coupling reactions has the potential to substantially streamline synthetic efforts in organic chemistry while bypassing substrate activation steps. Through the combination of photoredox-mediated hydrogen atom transfer (HAT) and nickel catalysis, we have developed a highly selective and general C-H arylation protocol that activates a wide array of C-H bonds as native functional handles for cross-coupling. This mild approach takes advantage of a tunable HAT catalyst that exhibits predictable reactivity patterns based on enthalpic and bond polarity considerations to selectively functionalize a-amino and α-oxy sp3 C-H bonds in both cyclic and acyclic systems.

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