Organic Chemistry Portal

Chemistry Books


Categories: Organic Chemistry >> Synthesis, Bio >> Biocatalysis, Natural Products

Classics in Total Synthesis

K. C. Nicolaou, Eric J. Sorensen

Paperback, 798 Pages
First Edition, 1996
ISBN: 3-527-29231-4

>> Classics in Total Synthesis II


This book is a must for every synthetic chemist. With didactic skill and clarity, K. C. Nicolaou and E. Sorensen present the most remarkable and ingenious total syntheses from outstanding synthetic organic chemists.

Editorial Review

Most synthesis of natural products require a special skill: Planning, current methods and even the development of completely new synthesis methods are required, because the tools of nature are many times not available or are completely unknown!

"Classics in Total Synthesis" presents the most important natural substance synthesis of the years 1950 to 1995. As in a kind of time document one experiences the increasing progress, if the first synthesis of Woodward (strychnine) were compared with today's. That Woodward used "State of the Art" - techniques purposefully and with an ingenious planning skill, is appreciated in this book. It is amazing, as in the 50's, how projects like the synthesis of penicillin were advanced. These kind of informations are presented in form of an interesting introduction before the synthesis is presented.

Both, the retrosynthetical analysis and the actual reaction sequence up to the natural product are described in detail and in an accurate language. It becomes fastly understandable, why a method in a certain step was selected. Important reactions are additionally deepened.

It is a large joy to read "Classics in Total Synthesis", even if one must ask himself amazedly if he had come on such ingenious synthesis ways. The selected examples cover a large range of methods and very important natural products. The book includes the years 1950 to 1995 and is for this reason, both, a kind of historical book and a reference book. And due to the excellent presentation of reaction mechanisms and very good explanations of selected reactions, it is a beautiful teaching material for the advanced student, in order to deepen the knowledge acquired in the study.


Constructing the Molecules of Nature
Strychnine (Woodward)
Strychnine (Overman)
Penicillin V (Sheehan)
Reserpine (Woodward)
Vitamin B12 (Woodward)
Progesterone (Johnson)
Prostaglandins F2 and E2 (Corey)
Prostaglandins A2 and F2 (Stork)
Carpanone (Chapman)
Monensin (Kishi)
Monensin (Still)
Biotin (Baggiolini)
Periplanone B (Still)
Periplanone B (Schreiber)
Isocomene (Pirrung)
Estrone (Vollhardt)
Erythronolide B (Corey)
Endiandric Acids A-G (Nicolaou)
Thienamycin (Merck)
Asteltoxin (Schreiber)
Amphotericin B (Nicolaou)
L-Hexoses (Masamune & Sharpless)
Cytovaricin (Evans)
Indolizamycin (Danishefsky)
Ginkgolide B (Corey)
Paoniflorigenin and Paoniflorin (Corey)
Methyl homosecodaphniphyllate (Heathcock)
Gilvocarcin M and V (Suzuki)
Calicheamicin 1I (Nicolaou)
Taxol (Nicolaou)
Rapamycin (Nicolaou)
Menthol (Noyori)
Palytoxin (Kishi)
Brevetoxin B (Nicolaou)