Conformational studies of N-carbomethoxy-2-alkoxyindolenines by dynamic NMR, crystallography, and molecular mechanics. Suárez-Castillo O. R., Contreras-Martínez Y. M. A., Beiza-Granados L., Meléndez-Rodríguez M., Villagómez-Ibarra J. R., Torrez-Valencia J. M., Morales-Ríos M. S., Joseph-Nathan P. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tet.2005.07.023
The synthesis of N-carbomethoxy-2-alkoxyindolenines and the transformation to their tautomeric indoles is reported. Variable-temperature 1H NMR studies of these 2-alkoxyindolenines evidenced dynamic processes involving two low-energy E and Z equilibrating conformers around the NC(O) carbamate bond, for which the barriers (?G?) between the two conformations are in the order of 12.513.9 kcal/mol, as deduced from computational NMR line shape simulations. The rotational barrier decreases as the bulkiness of the alkoxyl group increases, with the E conformer being always more stable. Molecular mechanics calculations evidenced a preferred quasi-axial position of the alkoxyl group in the five-membered ring as the steric effect increases, in agreement with X-ray diffraction studies.