Development of methodologies employing rhodium catalysis and studies toward the total synthesis of cortistatin A
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[Rh(CO]2Cl]2 has been shown to catalyze sequential, mechanistically- distinct transformations in one pot. Tandem allylic alkylation/cycloisomerization sequences have been developed to access valuable, complex structures from relatively simple substrates. A methodology for the enantioselective conjugate addition of 2-heteroaryl nucleophiles to a variety of Michael acceptors has been developed. This method was used successfully in an ongoing approach to the synthesis of cortistatin A. 10 linear steps have been completed towards the synthesis of cortistatin A, including a highly regioselective propargylation to install a quaternary carbon and a diastereoselective intramolecular Diels-Alder reaction.