Bioreduction of PEG-acetoacetate 1 is achieved using dry bakers yeast in toluene with a small amount of added water. After detachment from the polymer under basic conditions, the corresponding (S)-(+)- 3-hydroxybutanoic acid 3 was esterified with Me3SiCl and ethanol and ethyl (S)-(+)-3-hydroxybutanoate 4 was isolated with 97% e.e. and 70% overall yield.
Keywords: baker yeast, bioreduction, organic solvent, peg
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