2/8/2024 – Congratulations to Minji, Karina, Dylan, and Diana on their mini-review article demonstrating the use of alkene thianthrenation to access diverse cation synthons!

Oxidative alkene functionalization reactions are a fundamental class of complexity-building organic transformations. However, the majority of established approaches rely on electrophilic reagents that limit the diversity of groups that can be installed. Recent advances have established a new approach that instead relies on the transformation of alkenes into thianthrene-derived cationic electrophiles. These linchpin intermediates can be generated selectively and undergo a diverse array of mechanistically distinct reactions with abundant nucleophiles. Taken together, this unlocks a suite of net oxidative alkene transformations that have been elusive using conventional strategies. This Minireview describes these advances and is organized around the three distinct synthons formally accessible from alkenes via thianthrenation: 1) alkenyl cations; 2) vicinal dications; 3) allyl cations. Throughout the Minireview, we illustrate how thianthrenium salts address key limitations endemic to classic alkene-derived electrophiles and highlight the mechanistic origins of these distinctions wherever possible.