Carboxylate-Assisted C(sp3)–H Activation in Olefin Metathesis-Relevant Ruthenium Complexes

Jeffrey S. Cannon, Lufeng Zou, Peng Liu, Yu Lan, Daniel J. O’Leary, K. N. Houk, and Robert H. Grubbs

J. Am. Chem. Soc.,
2014, 136, (18), 6733-6743; 10.1021/ja5021958


The Houk and Grubbs groups have collaborated to investigate the mechanism of C–H activation at metathesis-relevant ruthenium(II) benzylidene complexes.

Synthesis of the metal complex at low temperature allowed for the direct observation of the C–H activation step, independent of the initial anionic ligand-exchange reaction. Combining these experimental findings with theoretical studies a clear picture of the mechanism and associated transition states was constructed.

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