Using ring closing metathesis (RCM) as the key operation, a rapid access to β-lactams fused to a sultam moiety of variable ring size was developed from low cost, commercially available starting materials. An efficient RCM of 4-vinyl-azetidin-2-ones to give 1-aza-bicyclo[4.2.0]oct-4-en-8-ones is also reported. © 2004 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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