Document Type



Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor's Name

Stanislaw Whuk

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

David Becker

Third Advisor's Name

Piero Gardinali

Fourth Advisor's Name

Kevin O'Shea

Fifth Advisor's Name

Richard Schoephoerster

Date of Defense



The enzyme S-adenosyl-L-homocysteine (AdoHey) hydrolase effects hydrolytic cleavage of AdoHcy to adenosine (Ado) and L-homocysteine (Hcy). The cellular levels of AdoHcy and Hcy are critical because AdoHcy is a potent feedback inhibitor of crucial transmethylation enzymes. Also, elevated plasma levels of Hcy in humans have been shown to be a risk factor in coronary artery disease.

On the basis of the previous finding that AdoHcy hydrolase is able to add the enzyme-sequestered water molecule across the 5',6'-double bond of (halo or dihalohomovinyl)-adenosines causing covalent binding inhibition, we designed and synthesized AdoHcy analogues with the 5',6'-olefin motif incorporated in place of the carbon-5' and sulfur atoms. From the available synthetic methods we chose two independent approaches: the first approach was based on the construction of a new C5'- C6' double bond via metathesis reactions, and the second approach was based on the formation of a new C6'-C7' single bond via Pd-catalyzed cross-couplings.

Cross-metathesis of the suitably protected 5'-deoxy-5'-methyleneadenosine with racemic 2-amino-5-hexenoate in the presence of Hoveyda-Grubb's catalyst followed by standard deprotection afforded the desired analogue as 5'E isomer of the inseparable mixture of 9'RIS diastereomers. Metathesis of chiral homoallylglycine [(2S)-amino-5-hexenoate] produced AdoHcy analogue with established stereochemistry E at C5'atom and S at C9' atom. The 5'-bromovinyl analogue was synthesized using the brominationdehydrobromination strategy with pyridinium tribromide and DBU.

Since literature reports on the Pd-catalyzed monoalkylation of dihaloalkenes (Csp2-Csp3 coupling) were scarce, we were prompted to undertake model studies on Pdcatalyzed coupling between vinyl dihalides and alkyl organometallics. The 1-fluoro-1- haloalkenes were found to undergo Negishi couplings with alkylzinc bromides to give multisubstituted fluoroalkenes. The alkylation was trans-selective affording pure Zfluoroalkenes. The highest yields were obtained with PdCl 2(dppb) catalyst, but the best stereochemical outcome was obtained with less reactive Pd(PPh3)4 . Couplings of 1,1- dichloro-and 1,1-dibromoalkenes with organozinc reagents resulted in the formation of monocoupled 1-halovinyl product.



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