New diastereoisomeric phosphites based on either (R)- or (S)-2,2′-dihydroxy-1,1′-binaphthyl (BINOL) and having the chiral alcoholic moiety derived from the monobenzyl ether of (R,R)-1,2-diphenylethane- 1,2-diol have been prepared and used as chiral ligands in the enantioselective copper-catalyzed 1,4-addition of diethylzinc to chalcone and 2-cyclohexen-1-one (enantiomeric excesses up to 48%). With the (aR,R,R) ligand dimethylzinc adds enantioselectively to (E)-cyclopentadecen-2-en-1-one to give (R)-(-)-muscone (68% yield, 78% ee). This provides an efficient access to a valuable ingredient of the perfume industry. However, with the (aS,R,R) ligand, (S)-(+)-muscone is obtained with longer reaction times (37% yield and 10% ee) with a very high double diastereoselection effect being observed. © 2003 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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