Collect. Czech. Chem. Commun. 1988, 53, 601-618

Base-catalyzed formation of spiro adduct from N-methyl-N-(2,4,6-trinitrophenyl)glycinamide, the smiles rearrangement of the amide in methanol

Jaromír Kaválek, Vladimír Macháček, Makky M. M. Hassanien and Vojeslav Štěrba

Department of Organic Chemistry, Institute of Chemical Technology, 532 10 Pardubice


The reaction of N-methyl-N-(2,4,6-trinitrophenyl)glycinamide (Ic with methoxide in methanol produces the spiro adduct IIc(A). In methanolic acetate buffers, the equilibrium is rapidly established between the spiro adduct IIc(A) and the dipolar ion of 2-methylamino-N-(2,4,6-trinitrophenyl)acetamide (IIIc(Z)). The equilibrium constant of the reaction IIIc(Z) ⇆ IIc(A) + H+ is by eight orders of magnitude greater than that of the analogous cyclization of 2-methylamino-N-methyl-N-(2,4,6-trinitrophenyl)acetamide to the spiro adduct. In chloracetate buffers, the dipolar ion is protonated to give 2-methylammonium-N-(2,4,6-trinitrohenyl)acetamide IIIc(K). The kinetics of the reversible reaction IIIc(Z) ⇆ IIc(A) + H+ has been studied in acetate buffers, aliphatic amine – ammonium salt buffers, and methoxide solutions. In all cases, the rate-limiting step was the proton transfer with half-lives in milliseconds. In more basic methanolic buffers (pH > 10) the rate-limiting step consists in the formation of spiro adduct from the zwiterion IIIc(Z) resulting from the protonation of the anion IIIc(A). n acetate buffers, the second reaction pathway via the cation IIIc(K) is predominant.