Enzyme-catalyzed synthesis of (R)-ketone-cyanohydrins and their hydrolysis to (R)-α-hydroxy-α-methyl-carboxylic acids

Franz Effenberger, Brigitte Hörsch, Franz Weingart, Thomas Ziegler & Stefan Kühner
(R)-Ketone-cyanohydrins (R)-2 are obtained with high enantioselectivity from aliphatic ketones 1 and HCN in organic solvents using (R)-oxynitrilase (EC as catalyst. Acid catalyzed hydrolysis of the cyanohydrins (R)-2 affords the corresponding (R)-α-hydroxy-α-methyl-carboxylic acids (R)-3 without measurable racemization.
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