Spectroscopic studies of the Chan-Lam amination: a mechanism-inspired solution to boronic ester reactivity

Julien C. Vantourout, Haralampos N. Miras, Albert Isidro-Llobet, Stephen Sproules, Allan J. B. Watson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

258 Citations (Scopus)


We report an investigation of the Chan-Lam amination reaction. A combination of spectroscopy, computational modeling, and crystallography has identified the structures of key intermediates and allowed a complete mechanistic description to be presented, including off-cycle inhibitory processes, the source of amine and organoboron reactivity issues, and the origin of competing oxidation/protodeboronation side reactions. Identification of key mechanistic events has allowed the development of a simple solution to these issues: manipulating Cu(I)→Cu(II) oxidation and exploiting three synergistic roles of boric acid has allowed the development of a general catalytic Chan-Lam amination, overcoming long-standing and unsolved amine and organoboron limitations of this valuable transformation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4769-4779
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the American Chemical Society
Issue number13
Early online date7 Mar 2017
Publication statusPublished - 5 Apr 2017


  • Chan-Lam amination reaction
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computational modeling
  • Crystallography
  • Off-cycle inhibitory processes
  • Amines
  • Organoboron reactivity issues
  • Oxidation/protodeboronation side reactions


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