Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Secondary homochiral lithium amides derived from α-methylbenzylamine undergo highly diastereoselective conjugate additions to a range of α,β-unsaturated esters. The corresponding β-amino acids are readily liberated by successive N-debenzylation and ester hydrolysis, furnishing (R)-β-amino butyric acid, (R)-β-amino pentanoic acid, (S)-β-leucine, (R)-β-amino octanoic acid, (S)-β-phenylalanine, (S)-β-tyrosine methyl ether, (S)-β-tyrosine hydrochloride and (S)-β-(2-methoxyphenyl)-β-amino propanoic acid in high yields and high ee. The application of this procedure to the synthesis of the natural products (R)-β-DOPA and (R)-β-lysine is demonstrated. The development of a simplified one-pot reaction protocol applicable to the multi-gram scale synthesis of homochiral β-amino esters is also delineated. © 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original publication




Journal article


Tetrahedron Asymmetry

Publication Date





1793 - 1811