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Published January 18, 2019 | Accepted Version + Supplemental Material
Journal Article Open

Concise total syntheses of (–)-jorunnamycin A and (–)-jorumycin enabled by asymmetric catalysis


The bis-tetrahydroisoquinoline (bis-THIQ) natural products have been studied intensively over the past four decades for their exceptionally potent anticancer activity, in addition to strong gram-positive and -negative antibiotic character. Synthetic strategies toward these complex polycyclic compounds have relied heavily on electrophilic aromatic chemistry, such as the Pictet-Spengler reaction, that mimics their biosynthetic pathways. Herein we report an approach to two bis-THIQ natural products, jorunnamycin A and jorumycin, that instead harnesses the power of modern transition-metal catalysis for the three major bond-forming events and proceeds with high efficiency (15 and 16 steps, respectively). By breaking from biomimicry, this strategy allows for the preparation of a more diverse set of non-natural analogs.

Additional Information

© 2018 American Association for the Advancement of Science. 6 September 2018; accepted 26 November 2018; Published online 20 December 2018. The authors thank Stig H. Christensen for experimental assistance and M. Takase and L. Henling for assistance with x-ray structure determination. Research reported in this publication was supported by the NIH National Institute of General Medical Sciences (R01 127972), the Margaret E. Early Medical Research Trust, the NSF under the CCI Center for Selective C−H Functionalization (CHE-1205646), the Teva Pharmaceuticals Marc A. Goshko Memorial Grant Program, and the California Institute of Technology RI2 Program. E.R.W. was supported by a Postdoctoral Fellowship, PF-16-011-01-CDD, from the American Cancer Society. A.N. was supported by the Royal Thai Government Scholarship program. M.K. was supported by a postdoctoral fellowship from the German Academic Exchange Service. G.L. was supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation. G.M.P. was supported by an Erwin Schroedinger Fellowship, J 3893–N34, from the Austrian Science Fund (FWF). P.M.T. was supported by a graduate fellowship from the California HIV/AIDS Research Program. E.G. was supported by Knud Højgaards Fond and Oticon Fonden. C.U.G. was supported by a Feodor Lynen Research Fellowship from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. Author contributions: B.M.S. conceived and directed the project. E.R.W., C.D.G, P.M.T., K.M.A., and B.M.S. conceptualized and designed the synthetic strategy. E.R.W., A.N., M.K., G.L., G.M.P., C.D.G., P.M.T., C.K.H., K.N., E.G., and C.U.G. designed, performed, and analyzed the synthetic chemistry experiments. E.R.W., A.N., and G.M.P. designed and synthesized bis-THIQ analogs 31–34. D.J.S., M.S.J.M. and D.C. designed, performed, and analyzed biological activity experiments. S.C.V. assisted with experimental design and purification and obtained x-ray quality crystals of bis-THIQ 27. E.R.W., A.N., G.M.P., and B.M.S. prepared the manuscript. D.J.S. and B.M.S. acquired funding for the project. Data and materials availability: Crystallographic parameters for compound 27 are available free of charge from the Cambridge Crystallographic Data Centre under CCDC 1875455. Data are available in the supplementary materials. The molecular characterization of the cell lines used in this Report has been deposited in the GEO public database (GEO:GSE18496). Competing interests: B.M.S. has received financial support unrelated to the current science from 1200 Pharma, LLC, Novartis, Holoclara, and Amgen. B.M.S. is a co-founder of 1200 Pharma, LLC. D.J.S. has received financial support unrelated to the current science from Pfizer, Novartis, Eli Lilly and Company, and BioMarin Pharmaceutical. D.J.S. is a paid consultant to Novartis and Eli Lilly and Company. The California Institute of Technology holds a patent application on methods for preparing bis-tetrahydroisoquinoline-containing compounds (US patent application 16/038,968; international patent application PCT/US18/42710), on which E.R.W., A.N., M.K., G.L., G.M.P., C.D.G., P.M.T., C.K.H., K.N., C.U.G., K.M.A., S.C.V., and B.M.S. are named as inventors.

Attached Files

Accepted Version - nihms-1068277.pdf

Supplemental Material - aav3421_Welin_SM.pdf


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August 19, 2023
October 19, 2023