Towards a practical, non-enzymatic process for molnupiravir from cytidine

By: Gopalsamuthiram, Vijayagopal R.; Kadam, Appasaheb L.; Noble, Jeffrey K.; Snead, David R.; Williams, Corshai T.; Jamison, Timothy F.; Senanayake, Chris; Yadaw, Ajay; Roy, Sarabindu; Sirasani, Gopal; Gupton, Frank B.; Burns, Justina M.; Cook, Daniel W.; Stringham, Rodger W.; Ahmad, Saeed; Krack, Rudy

A scalable four step synthesis of molnupiravir from cytidine is described herein. The attractiveness of this approach is its fully chem. nature involving inexpensive reagents and more environmentally friendly solvents such as water, isopropanol, acetonitrile and acetone. Isolation and purifn. procedures are improved in comparison to our earlier report, as all intermediates can be isolated via aq. acid treatment and recrystn. The key steps in the synthesis, namely ester formation, hydroxamination and deprotection were done on multigram scale to afford molnupiravir in 36-41% yield with av. purity of 98 wt% by q-NMR and 99 area % by HPLC.