What’s with aminoquinoline directing groups all of a sudden?

Colorblind Chemistry

Seriously, did someone start giving 8-aminoquinoline away for free?

 aminoquinoline

I started noticing a particular trend in the ASAPs of some of the organic journals I follow, all involving various uses of the aminoquinoline amide as a directing group. The number of papers to come out in the past month or so is absolutely staggering, and why not–the results are some really cool reactions! The one that first caught my attention was actually published back-to-back by both Silas Cook1 (Indiana) and Nakamura2 (U. Tokyo):

 aminoquinoline 1

As far as alkylation reactions go, this one hits a lot of the points on the “want” list—highly selective, uses a non-precious metal, doesn’t require ludicrous temperatures, and is done very, very quickly. But again, two groups simultaneously discovered nearly identical reactions—something must have been going on to make this happen, especially since these directed reactions have continued to inspire new variants even in…

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