ConspectusThe remarkable aliphatic C-H hydroxylations catalyzed by the heme-containing enzyme, cytochrome P450, have attracted sustained attention for more than four decades. The effectiveness of P450 enzymes as highly selective biocatalysts for a wide range of oxygenation reactions of complex substrates has driven chemists to develop synthetic metalloporphyrin model compounds that mimic P450 reactivity. Among various known metalloporphyrins, manganese derivatives have received considerable attention since they have been shown to be versatile and powerful mediators for alkane hydroxylation and olefin epoxidation. Mechanistic studies have shown that the key intermediates of the manganese porphyrin-catalyzed oxygenation reactions include oxo- and dioxomanganese(V) species that transfer an oxygen atom to the substrate through a hydrogen abstraction/oxygen recombination pathway known as the oxygen rebound mechanism. Application of manganese porphyrins has been largely restricted to catalysis of oxygenation reactions until recently, however, due to ultrafast oxygen transfer rates.In this Account, we discuss recently developed carbon-halogen bond formation, including fluorination reactions catalyzed by manganese porphyrins and related salen species. We found that biphasic sodium hypochlorite/manganese porphyrin systems can efficiently and selectively convert even unactivated aliphatic C-H bonds to C-Cl bonds. An understanding of this novel reactivity derived from results obtained for the oxidation of the mechanistically diagnostic substrate and radical clock, norcarane. Significantly, the oxygen rebound rate in Mn-mediated hydroxylation is highly correlated with the nature of the trans-axial ligands bound to the manganese center (L-MnV=O). Based on the ability of fluoride ion to decelerate the oxygen rebound step, we envisaged that a relatively long-lived substrate radical could be trapped by a Mn-F fluorine source, effecting carbon-fluorine bond formation. Indeed, this idea led to the discovery of the first Mn-catalyzed direct aliphatic C-H fluorination reactions utilizing simple, nucleophilic fluoride salts. Mechanistic studies and DFT calculations have revealed a trans-difluoromanganese(IV) species as the key fluorine transfer intermediate. In addition to catalyzing normal 19F-fluorination reactions, manganese salen complexes were found to enable the incorporation of radioactive 18F fluorine via C-H activation. This advance represented the first direct Csp3-H bond 18F labeling with no-carrier-added [18F]fluoride and facilitated the late-stage labeling of drug molecules for PET imaging. Given the high reactivity and enzymatic-like selectively of metalloporphyrins, we envision that this new Heteroatom-Rebound Catalysis (HRC) strategy will find widespread application in the C-H functionalization arena and serve as an effective tool for forming new carbon-heteroatom bonds at otherwise inaccessible sites in target molecules.
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