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2-Substituted N-acyl-piperidine is a widespread and important structural motif, found in approximately 500 currently available structures, and present in nearly 30 pharmaceutically active compounds. Restricted rotation of the acyl substituent in such molecules can give rise to two distinct chemical environments. Here we demonstrate, using NMR studies and density functional theory modeling of the lowest energy structures of 5-acyl-6,7-dihydrothieno[3,2-c]pyridine derivatives, that the amide E:Z equilibrium is affected by non-covalent interactions between the amide oxygen and adjacent aromatic protons. Structural predictions were used to design molecules that promote either the E- or Z-amide conformation, enabling preparation of compounds with a tailored conformational ratio, as proven by NMR studies. Analysis of the available X-ray data of a variety of published N-acyl-piperidine-containing compounds further indicates that these molecules are also clustered in the two observed conformations. This finding emphasizes that directed conformational isomerism has significant implications for the design of both small molecules and larger amide-containing molecular architectures.

Original publication

DOI

10.1021/acs.joc.5b00205

Type

Journal article

Journal

J Org Chem

Publication Date

2015

Volume

80

Pages

4370 - 4377

Keywords

Amides/*chemistry Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy Molecular Structure Pyridines/*chemistry Quantum Theory Thiophenes/*chemistry