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Molecules 2011, 16(5), 4097-4103; doi:10.3390/molecules16054097

Synthesis of the Key Intermediate of Coenzyme Q10

1,2,†,* , 1,2
1 Key Laboratory of Forest Plant Ecology, Ministry of Education, Northeast Forestry University, Harbin 150040, China 2 Engineering Research Center of Forestry Bio-preparation, Ministry of Education, Northeast Forestry University, Harbin 150040, China These authors contributed equally to this work.
* Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 24 March 2011 / Revised: 9 May 2011 / Accepted: 9 May 2011 / Published: 18 May 2011
(This article belongs to the Section Organic Synthesis)
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(2’E)-1-(3-methyl-4-p-toluenesulfonyl-2-butene)-6-methyl-2,3,4,5-tetramethoxybenzene (4) is the key intermediate in the synthesis of coenzyme Q10 via a coupling reaction with solanesyl bromide. In this paper, we report a simple and effective synthesis of compound 4, starting with the readily available and inexpensive precursors p-toluenesulfonyl chloride (TsCl) and isoprene to obtain (2E)-1-p-toluenesulfonyl-2-methyl-4-hydroxy-2-butene (3) by addition, esterification and hydrolysis. Application of the Friedel-Crafts alkylation to compound 3, followed by the addition of 2,3,4,5-tetramethoxytoluene (TeMT), assembled the two parts into compound 4. The key parameters of each reaction were optimized at the same time, and the four total operations needed to produced compound 4 had a 27.9% overall yield under the optimized conditions. The structures of the compounds were characterized by 1H-NMR, IR and MS. This alternative process has the potential to be used for large-scale process.
Keywords: p-toluenesulfonyl chloride; isoprene; 2,3,4,5-tetramethoxytoluene; (2’E)-1-(3-methyl-4-p-toluenesulfonyl-2-butene)-6-methyl-2,3,4,5-tetramethoxybenzene p-toluenesulfonyl chloride; isoprene; 2,3,4,5-tetramethoxytoluene; (2’E)-1-(3-methyl-4-p-toluenesulfonyl-2-butene)-6-methyl-2,3,4,5-tetramethoxybenzene
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Mu, F.-S.; Luo, M.; Fu, Y.-J.; Zhang, X.; Yu, P.; Zu, Y.-G. Synthesis of the Key Intermediate of Coenzyme Q10. Molecules 2011, 16, 4097-4103.

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