Synthesis & Pharmacology of α-PCYP and α-PVP: A Comprehensive Review

Comprehensive Guide to α-PVP: Synthesis, Equipment, and Pharmacology


α-PVP, a popular synthetic cathinone, is a compound synthesized on a medium scale, typically ranging from 1 to 10 kilograms. This comprehensive guide provides detailed insights into the synthesis of α-PVP, the essential equipment and glassware required, and delves into its pharmacological properties.

alpha-PVP synthesis

Equipment and Glassware for α-PVP Synthesis

Before diving into the synthesis process, it's crucial to have the necessary equipment and glassware ready. Here's a list:

  1. Round bottom flask
  2. Retort stand and clamp for securing apparatus
  3. Reflux condenser
  4. Drip funnel
  5. pH indicator papers
  6. Beakers
  7. Vacuum source
  8. Laboratory scale (1-2000 g is suitable)
  9. Measuring cylinders (100, 500, and 1000 mL)
  10. Top stirrer with heating plate
  11. Glass rod and spatula
  12. Separatory funnel (1 L)
  13. Laboratory-grade thermometer
  14. Buchner flask and funnel
  15. Filter paper
  16. Rotary evaporator
  17. Conventional funnel


Required Reagents

To initiate the synthesis process, you'll need a range of reagents:

  • Valerophenone (CAS 1009-14-9) —1 kg
  • Hydrobromic acid (HBr) —1 kg, 48%
  • Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) —300 g, 35%
  • Pyrrolidine —1100 ml (CAS 123-75-1)
  • Ethyl acetate —4 L
  • Sodium carbonate (Na2CO3) —20% aqueous solution
  • Diethyl ether (Et2O) —50 ml
  • Ethanol (EtOH) - 50 ml
  • Dibenzoyl-D-tartaric acid —12.7 g, 35.5 mmol
  • Dichloromethane (CH2Cl2) — 830 mL
  • Hexane - 1100 mL
  • Hydrochloric acid (HCl) — concentrated, 35%

α-PVP Synthesis: A Step-by-Step Guide

The synthesis process of α-PVP can be broken down into several stages. Here's a concise overview:

Stage 1: Halogenation

Stage 1: Halogenation

  1. Weigh 1 kg of Valerophenone (CAS 1009-14-9) and place it in the reactor.
  2. Add 1000 g of 48% Hydrobromic acid (HBr).
  3. Stir the reaction mixture vigorously for 5 minutes.
  4. Add 300 g of 35% Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) into the drip funnel and attach it to the reactor.
  5. Add hydrogen peroxide dropwise with vigorous stirring.
  6. Ensure the mixture discolors, varying from yellow to red.
  7. Maintain the temperature below 65 .
  8. Stop the dripping of H2O2 if the temperature rises.
  9. Stir vigorously for 1.5 hours.
  10. Add distilled water and stir for 5 minutes.
  11. Separate the reaction mixture into two layers, with the target layer at the bottom.
  12. Remove the water layer using a vacuum pump.
  13. Add an aqueous alkaline solution and stir for 5 minutes.
  14. Repeat steps 9, 10, and 11.
  15. Leave the resulting product in the reactor.

Stage 2: Amination

Stage 2: Amination

  1. Place 4 L of ethyl acetate into a reactor with 2'-Bromovalerophenone (1.5 kg) and stir for 5 minutes.
  2. Install a drip funnel at the reactor neck and add 1150 ml of pyrrolidine (CAS 123-75-1).
  3. Add pyrrolidine dropwise with vigorous stirring.
  4. Maintain the temperature below 65 .
  5. Stir vigorously for 1 hour after completing the pyrrolidine addition.
  6. Turn on a reactor vacuum pump and a chiller pump for the reflux condenser.
  7. Distill off most of the ethyl acetate.
  8. Stop the vacuum pump and add acetone while continuing to stir.
  9. Add hydrochloric acid into the drip funnel on the reactor neck.
  10. Adjust the pH to 5 using hydrochloric acid.
  11. Pour the reaction mixture into a beaker and place it in a freezer for 12 hours.

Stage 3: Filtration

Stage 3: Filtration

  1. Install a vacuum filtration system (nutsche filter, filter cloth, vacuum pump).
  2. Turn on the vacuum pump.
  3. Pour the reaction mixture from the beaker (from step 13 of Stage 2) into the Buchner funnel.
  4. Filter and press until a solid is obtained.
  5. Pour cold acetone into the Buchner funnel to cover the solid.
  6. Filter and wash the product. Repeat step 5 if the solid is not white.
  7. Pour the content of the Buchner funnel into a Pyrex dish for the drying process after acetone filtration.
  8. Place the Pyrex dish in a dry area at room temperature.
  9. Dry the product to a constant mass, periodically mixing and crushing it to expedite the drying process.

Stage 4: Diastereomeric

  1. Dissolve 10.0 g (35.5 mmol) of α-PVP HCl in a minimal volume of distilled water.
  2. Add Na2CO3 20% aqueous solution to reach pH 8-9.
  3. Extract the mixture with 50 ml of Et2O.
  4. Separate the ether extract in a separatory funnel and distill off Et2O.
  5. Dissolve α-PVP free base in 50 ml of EtOH.
  6. Heat the ethanol solution of α-PVP free base to 70 .
  7. Add 12.7 g (35.5 mmol) of Dibenzoyl-D-tartaric acid.
  8. Reflux the solution with a reflux condenser for 1 minute and cool it to room temperature.
  9. Distill off the solvent.
  10. Dissolve the residue in 530 mL of CH2Cl2. Add 700 mL of hexane with stirring.
  11. Collect the resulting crystals (9.1 g) by filtration through a Buchner flask and funnel after 3 days.
  12. Perform three consecutive recrystallizations from CH2Cl2/hexane (300/400 mL) to obtain a single diastereoisomer (6.1 g, 61%).
  13. Repeat steps 1, 2, and 3 with the salt from step 11.
  14. Add cold acetone.
  15. Add hydrochloric acid (HCl) to reach pH 5.
  16. Filter and air dry the produced crystals from step 15.

This comprehensive guide provides detailed insights into the synthesis, equipment, and pharmacology of α-PVP, offering a comprehensive resource for those interested in understanding this compound.

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