Clavilactones A, B, and D are epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase inhibitors that were isolated from cultures of the fungus Clitocybe clavipes. Here, we report full details of the total synthesis of these clavilactones. A key feature of our synthetic approach is a ring-opening/ring-closing metathesis strategy that allows the concise transformation of a cyclobutenecarboxylate into a γ-butenolide. Coupled with enantioselective Ti/BINOL-catalyzed alkynylation of a multisubstituted benzaldehyde and ring-closing metathesis of a diene-bearing silylene acetal to construct the 10-membered carbocycle, this strategy enabled the total synthesis of the natural enantiomers (+)-clavilactone A and (-)-clavilactone B. In addition, the correct structure of clavilactone D was determined by the synthesis of two newly proposed structures. This research resulted in the asymmetric synthesis of the revised (+)-clavilactone D.
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