SOS Author Spotlight: Hajime Ito and Koji Kubota


In a contribution to the recent Science of Synthesis Reference Library volume on Advances in Organoboron Chemistry towards Organic Synthesis, Profs. Hajime Ito and Koji Kubota have compiled a review on borylative ring-closing reactions.

Ring-closing reactions with simultaneous incorporation of a boryl group is of great significance because this can be utilized as a strategy to access key intermediates for the preparation of functionalized carbo- and heterocyclic moieties, which are ubiquitous in natural and useful nonnatural organic compounds.

Profs. Ito and Kubota, of Hokkaido University (Japan), include in their chapter coverage of protocols to borylate alkenes, allenes, and alkynes bearing leaving groups, as well as nonactivated unsaturated substrates, to eventually conduct the ring-closing pathway in an intramolecular fashion.

The single-volume Advances in Organoboron Chemistry towards Organic Synthesis (2019) was edited by Prof. Elena Fernández (University Rovira i Virgili, Tarragona, Spain). On the chapter by Hajime and Koji, Prof. Hernandez notes (in her introduction to the volume) that the “authors compile a large number of examples, including asymmetric versions, thus helping the reader to choose the metal catalyst and ligand most appropriate for the ring closing process they are interested in. In addition to metal-catalyzed methods, transition-metal-free protocols using boron electrophiles have also been included.”

Dr. Hajime Ito is currently Professor, Faculty of Engineering, Hokkaido University (since 2010) and also Vice Director of the Institute for Chemical Reaction Design and Discovery (WPI-ICReDD) at Hokkaido University (since 2018). After obtaining his Ph.D. in 1996 at Kyoto University, he held Assistant Professor positions at the University of Tsukuba and the Institute for Molecular Science. He was then a Research Fellow at The Scripps Research Institute (USA), before joining Hokkaido University as Associate Professor in 2002. His research interests include the development of new reactions based on copper, boron, and other organometallic compounds, and also mechano-responsive materials and mechanochemical synthesis.

Professor Koji Kubota

Dr. Koji Kubota is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Engineering and the Institute of Chemical Reaction Design and Discovery (WPI-ICReDD), Hokkaido University. Koji obtained his Ph.D. in 2016 from Hokkaido University, before undertaking Postdoctoral research at both UC Berkeley and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (USA). In 2018, he became a Specially Appointed Assistant Professor (Hokkaido University) before becoming Associate Professor in 2021, where his research is focused on the development of new reactions using mechanochemistry.

For more information about the Hajime Ito research group and their scientific interests, click here.

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