Asymmetric microbial reduction of ketones: absolute configuration of trans-4-ethyl-1-(1S-hydroxyethyl)cyclohexanol
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A set of five fungal species, Botrytis cinerea, Trichoderma viride and Eutypa lata, and the endophytic fungi Colletotrichum crassipes and Xylaria sp., was used in screening for microbial biocatalysts to detect monooxygenase and alcohol dehydrogenase activities (for the stereoselective reduction of carbonyl compounds). 4-Ethylcyclohexanone and acetophenone were biotransformed by the fungal set. The main reaction pathways involved reduction and hydroxylations at several positions including tertiary carbons. B. cinerea was very effective in the bioreduction of both substrates leading to the chiral alcohol (S)-1-phenylethanol in up to 90% enantiomeric excess, and the cis-trans ratio for 4-ethylcyclohexanol was 0:100. trans-4-Ethyl-1-(1S-hydroxyethyl)cyclohexanol, obtained from biotransformation by means of an acyloin-type reaction, is reported here for the first time. The absolute configurations of the compounds trans-4-ethyl-1-(1S-hydroxyethyl)cyclohexanol and 4-(1S- and 4-(1R-hydroxyethyl)cyclohexanone were determined by NMR analysis of the corresponding Mosher's esters. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.