Nitrogen substituted indole-2-carboxylates can be prepared via an intramolecular palladium-catalysed amination reaction of didehydrophenylalanine derivatives using PdCl2(dppf) and KOAc in DMF at 90°C to form the indole nucleus. The specific formation of (Z)-isomers from Horner-Wadsworth-Emmons reaction of phosphonylglycinates and 2- iodobenzaldehydes was crucial to the success of the process. The product N- substituted indole-2-carboxylates were isolated in high yield. (C) 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd.
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