Author Topic: Anise oil as PMA precursor  (Read 3355 times)

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  • Guest
Anise oil as PMA precursor
« on: May 09, 2003, 08:36:00 PM »
Anise oil as para-methoxyamphetamine (PMA) precursor
D. Waumans, N. Bruneel, J. Tytgat
For. Sci. Int., 133 (2003) 159-170


These days, MDMA is one of the most popular drugs of abuse. Due to its illegality, MDMA and its chemical precursors are watched by governmental organizations in many countries. To avoid conflicts with legal instances, underground chemists have tried to market several new unregulated amphetamine analogues, such as 4-MTA. Para-methoxyamphetamine (PMA), on the other hand, is regulated by law but its precursors are easily obtained since they are cheap and unwatched. This article presents such a case, namely the large scale synthesis of PMA using anethole, a main constituent of anise oil, as precursor. Anethole has been converted to its phenyl acetone analogue via peracid oxidation, while PMA itself has been synthesized using this ketone as precursor in the Leuckart synthesis. The synthesis of PMA using anethole as starting product has been investigated applying GC/MS and GC-HSPME/MS techniques, hereby discovering new specific (4-methoxyphenol) and already identified synthesis impurities (4-methyl-5-(4-methoxyphenyl)pyrimidine, N-( -4-methoxyphenylisopropyl)-4-methoxybenzyl methyl ketimine, 1-(4-methoxyphenyl)-N-(2-(4-methoxyphenyl)-1-methylethyl-2-propanamine, 1-(4-methoxyphenyl)-N-methyl-N-(2-(4-methoxyphenyl)-1-methylethyl-2-propanamine, N-( -4-methoxyphenylisopropyl)-4-methoxybenzaldimine). The new impurity 4-methoxyphenol is specific for the application of a peracid oxidation method where anethole is used as precursor.


  • Guest
PMA from anise oil......mmmmmmmm....
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2003, 04:58:00 PM »
I think it's a great idea (at least for me) since in my country -one ex communist, non USSR, little country in eastern Europe- the public perception of drugs is: "drugs=heroin , something you inject in your veins an makes you do crazy things".

Besides that I don't think the law authority here makes much difference between the various substituted amphetamine derivates and MDMA -they recently (a couple of months ago) put safrole on the precursors list...

.... so you can get 10ml freshly squeezed, fennel oil(~90% anthole) for about 1.5$ from the "aromatherapy, natural stuff & more" store (among other oily, goody-smelly things )...I don't know about you, but for my needs is just perfect  :)

my experiments:

anethole--(Br2/bromhydrin/epoxide oxidation)-->ketone

the ketone -(NH4Cl/NaOH Al/Hg)-> amine reaction was a failure (I really don't want to talk about that)

any refs and sugestions are welcome.... :)


  • Guest
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2003, 05:19:00 PM »

any refs and sugestions are welcome....

Read CA, it's FULL with references to anethole.

... so you can get 10ml freshly squeezed, fennel oil(~90% anthole) for about 1.5$ from the "aromatherapy, natural stuff & more" store (among other oily, goody-smelly things )...I don't know about you, but for my needs is just perfect

Wrong, fennel oil contains much less anethole: 50-70%. Anise oil derived from Illiceum verum and Pimpinella anisum is what you need (80-95%). Or should I say "need". I never understood why somebody wants to take PMA deliberately if he/she has experienced the effects before. I tried the drug only twice (I guess about 4 years ago), and brought back the memories of bad trips. It caused serious overheating and a flood of sweat. Very unpleasant. Now, I only have a small bottle of sweet anise left, just for its odor.


  • Guest
Re: anethole(anise camphor)
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2003, 04:23:00 AM »
One can also add methylamine to the allene in the presence of a catalytic amount of CuBr. or palladium compounds.  That would make P-methoxy Methamphetamine. What I like to know is how  to remove the methoxy or change it to a less inactive component or get rid of it


  • Guest
cleavage of methoxy groups
« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2003, 05:37:00 PM »
I've read some reference about cleavege of the methoxy group here on the hive (it was somthing about eugenol I think...?)
It was a method involving AlCl3 I guess...

I'll get back to you on that...


  • Guest
anise oil
« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2003, 05:54:00 PM »
You can convert anethole to anol using several methods, but they usually give low yields. I'm not sure AlCl3 (or AlI3) will work for anethole, since I'm affraid a Friedel-Crafts polymerization reaction might kick in.
However, conversion of p-methoxybenzaldehyde to p-hydroxybenzaldehyde is feasible if you have aluminium foil and I2 crystals (AlI3 is a very good ether cleavage Lewis acid; e.g.

Post 422757

(GC_MS: "Aluminium iodide in ether cleavage", Methods Discourse)
). In a pure theoretical way, p-hydroxybenzaldehyde is a gateway toward two classes of goodies:
1. by monobromination of p-hydroxybenzaldehyde, 3-bromo-4-hydroxybenzaldehyde is obtained. What happens if the bromo group is substituted for hydroxy? Yup, correct. But I don't understand why one would try this alternative though. Vanilline is much easier and requires less hazardous chemicals (like the bromine).
2. by dibromination of p-hydroxybenzaldehyde, a precursor for 3,4,5-trimethoxy and triethoxybenzaldehyde is obtained. p-Methoxybenzaldehyde can be dibrominated as well, wich might be an interesting precursor for EME.

All pure theoretically though.


  • Guest
Eugenol demethylation (by Drone 342)....
« Reply #7 on: June 09, 2003, 07:50:00 PM »
about the use of lewis acids to cleave aryl methoxy groups...

I haven't tried it (and I don't know if anyone has) but maybe someday...


  • Guest
« Reply #8 on: June 19, 2003, 11:31:00 PM »
I remember subjecting anise oil to a bromination reaction and had a yellow oil as result.


  • Guest
« Reply #9 on: June 23, 2003, 08:07:00 PM »
> ~100% anise was brominated.

how do you know?
weight increase? tlc? boiling point?

(can you try with KBr?)


  • Guest
« Reply #10 on: June 23, 2003, 10:22:00 PM »
Also, you should consider that - if not using pure anethole - that anise oil contains other components which also have (multiple) double bonds.


  • Guest
« Reply #11 on: June 25, 2003, 02:33:00 PM »
In my experiments (not always so fortunate) I used Br2 (not NaBr/H2SO4/DMSO).
I prepared the bromine using KBr and H2SO4 added from a dropping funnel. The flask containing KBr was slightly heated and the bromine vapours were colected through a glass tube (use rubber tubing just for the joints 'cause the bromine will turn it into breakable shit and may cause plugging) into an ice cooled flask.
You should also be careful because of bromine vapours that are quite nasty (take my word for it).
In the articles I've read the bromine solution (in DCM, CCl4, or naphta lighter fluid) was added to the anethole.
In my case I did just the opposite (I'm not so keen on handling bromine in confined space)- I've added a solution of anise oil in DCM to a bromine solution (also DCM) using an addition funnel.(I've read bromine, also idine and chlorine, reacts quikly in DCM, CCl4, and naphta).
During addition the color remained the same(dark brown-red). At the end upon stiring the solution became slightly reddish, there was a sudden release of some gas (vapors of somekind???), and the solution became a little warm.

And that's about it....

You can read more somewhere on rhodium's page and probably here at the hive as well. your results  :)


  • Guest
also about anise oil becoming magenta - it...
« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2003, 02:37:00 PM »
also about anise oil becoming magenta - it happend to me to
and I thought it was somekind of reaction (polymerisation) cause by the conc. sulfuric acid...I don't know...


  • Guest
« Reply #13 on: June 25, 2003, 06:10:00 PM »
you made dibromo anethole, doofus  :P  :P


  • Guest
PMA via dibromide derivate
« Reply #14 on: June 27, 2003, 10:11:00 PM »

anethole --Br2--> dibromide >bromohydrin >epoxide >ketone ---NH3/Al/Hg---> PMA

- chapter5

That was the general idea and in my case is much more
aplicable since DMSO and DMF are not accesible. :)

- epoxides from propenylbenzenes - someone might find it useful...I guess


  • Guest
« Reply #15 on: June 27, 2003, 10:41:00 PM »
that sounds like a painful way to PMA  :P

oh, and btw, the NH3/Al/Hg doesn't work. utfse.
(rhodium: does "Nichols et al, J. Med. Chem., 29, 2009-2015 (1986)." really prepare
MDA with NH3/Al/Hg like stated in TCBOE? if not, how about adding a big red warning
to the passage that says so?)


  • Guest
TCBOE is in error - again.
« Reply #16 on: June 28, 2003, 08:16:00 PM »

J. Med. Chem., 29, 2009-2015 (1986)

( is about the synthesis of MBDB and BDB (the alpha-ethyl homologs of MDMA/MDA), and only the N-Methylated amine is made by Al/Hg reductive amination, the primary amine is made from NH4OAc/NaBH3CN - yet again TCBOE is at fault.

I'd really like to have warnings added to the many incorrect passages of TCBOE, but I'd like to have it done thoroughly then - if only a fraction of the glaring errors are commented upon, people are probably more likely to assume that the rest is fully correct.

Would you like to help me go through the entire book and write correctional footnotes, so that I can insert them in the documents later?


  • Guest
screw the primary amine
« Reply #17 on: July 27, 2003, 11:01:00 AM »
HOw can anyone here even talk about making this primary amine after all the toxic reports.  HOwever as i have been saying for a while. The n'methyl derivitive is awesome. 

The Para methoxy group is not very prone to polymerization with any of the peracid reactions.  Reactions to the ketone that involve the glycol are slightly lower yeilding than reactions that procede through the epoxide.  This may be due to the fact that the reactivity of the peracid is lower in reactions that procede throught he epoxide due to the conditions nescesary for it formation. 

IN swims experience the best method for producing the ketone is VIa the MeCN/MeOH/H2O2 Method.

This is a rediculas almost one pot to the ketone.

This is how it goes. FIll in your own ammounts

Alkene to Solvent    V/V  Alkene:MeOH:MeCN:H2O2     PH 8.8
                             1  :  5 : 5             *NaCO3
Alkene to Oxident    M/M     1  : -------- 1.13

------------------------tear here--------------------------

Add all reactants together with the exception of the H2O2
Use enough sodium carbonate to make the reaction have a PH of 8.8 The sodium carbonate will not dissolve.  The add your 35%H2O2.  Stirr this for 24hrs at room temp.

After 24 hrs has elapsed filter the solution to remove the Sodium Carbonate. Then place this on some heat and distill off all the MeCn/MeOH.
WHen the temp starts to climb past 80 or so Change recieving flasks and keep the MeOH/MeCN to use on the next run. Keep the temp at 100 till the waters gone from the 35%H2O2.
Now rotate the rig so the condensor is slightly inclined like a reflux condensor. now turn the heat up slowly till the epoxide starts to boil.  Watch the kneck of the flask to see when the drip back is ketone green.  hold it here for a few minutes then turn the conmdensor downward and slowly distill the ketone at atm pressure. there is no other fraction that comes over.  It is actually not epoxide that is boiling at first but ketone that was just formed.  the Bp Of the ketone is lower than that of the epoxide.  If you do your distillation slowly no epoxide will make it over as it is converted to ketone before it reaches it's boiling point.  Yeild from 170gms raw oil was 140gms.  Reductive aminations with nitromethane yeilded 75-80%with ketone made ni this manner; 80-85%with MeAm and NaBH4.

4MeO'NN'Diethylamphtamine has also been syhthesized in good yeild from this ketone with NaBH4.  Pending BioAssay.

Anethol is also a good starting point for some interesting trisubstituted amphetamines.
Take for example 3,5bromo,4 methoxy amphetamine:  Compare this to 4 bromo2,5dimethoxyamphetamine.  I am not aware that this compound ha sbeen explored yet but i would likely guess that they would be very similar.
  One bee has sampled the dibrominated N'Methyl analog and is preparing a report to the future. All you get now is that he was estatic.  The Amphetamine is in line for synthesis next.
  The only other mention of dihalogenated methoxy compounds was by G-pig a few years ago.  He prepared the PEA and was also very excited about his findings. 
   The 4 position seems to be the most important position for substitution of the ring.  a resourceful chemist would somehow turn that methoxy into a single flourineMMMMMM yum.


  • Guest
N-methyl PMA
« Reply #18 on: August 24, 2003, 09:11:00 PM »
Well I guess someone should try and correct any mistakes found on Rhodium' least no one got hurt.. :)
Since Al/Hg/NH3 reduction does not work on the primary amine and works fine (at least so I've read) on N-methylated amine (as in some MDMA methods) I think it would work on a N-methyl PMA reaction.

So I have this in mind:
 anethole - Br2 > epoxide > ketone
 ketone > MeNH2 /Al/Hg > N-methyl PMA (as in "Osmium's variation on the Al/Hg reductive amination of MDP2P") I right ???...
Please post any comments or experimental notes  :)


  • Guest
« Reply #19 on: August 26, 2003, 03:14:00 AM »
Please post any comments or experimental notes 

I.  UTFSE!!!  N-methyl-PMA, or commonly called PMMA, has been fully covered here before. To obtain it just substitute the correct molar amount of anethole for isosafrole in a peracid, oxone,... oxidation, followed by a reductive amination of 4-MP2P with MeNO2 or MeNH2

II. I'd think twice about ingesting a substance like PMMA.

PiHKaL #130

( :

 In truth, METHYL-MA is a well studied drug, at least in animals. In both mice and rats, it is an exceptionally potent agent in creating the state of catatonia. Animal studies, prompted by the clandestine synthesis of METHYL-MA, have shown that there is indeed locomotor stimulation and some central effects, but these effects are somehow different than those of a simple amphetamine-like agent. The experimenter's conclusions, based on its structural resemblance to 4-MA and its proclivity to produce catatonia in some animal species and the ever-present possibility that there might be unsuspected neurochemical changes to be seen with its use, are that human experimentation should be discouraged. I have come to the same conclusion, but in my case this is based on a much more succinct observation: I tried it and I didn't like it.




Around here only V_L appears to like it.


  • Guest
Peracid Epoxidation of trans-Anethole
« Reply #20 on: June 03, 2004, 08:26:00 PM »
Peracid Epoxidation of p-Methoxy-trans-?-Methylstyrene (trans-Anethole)
Rebecca S. Centko and Ram S. Mohan
J. Chem. Educ. 78(1), 77-78 (2001)

Epoxidation of alkenes using peroxyacids is one of the most fundamental reactions in organic chemistry, yet there are very few examples of laboratory experiments that illustrate this important reaction (Ref 1). The inherent instability of many epoxides in acidic solutions makes the synthesis of acid-sensitive epoxides by this route difficult. Frequently, the carboxylic acid formed from the peracid during epoxidation reacts with acid-sensitive epoxides to give ?-hydroxyesters as the major product. Procedures have been developed for epoxidation of alkenes in the presence of buffers to minimize this problem (Ref 2).

Overview of the Experiment

The entire reaction, including the work up, takes only about an hour. Analysis of NMR and IR spectra of the product obtained in the absence of a buffer indicates that the ester, which has been assigned structure 3, is the major product.

The formation of 3 as the major product (Note 1) rather than 4, can be attributed to a significant contribution to the resonance hybrid by the highly stable p-methoxy-substituted benzylic cation resonance form 3a (Scheme II). This is consistent with the fact that in acid-catalyzed reactions, epoxides suffer attack at the carbon that can best stabilize positive charge (Scheme II).

Experimental Section

Procedure A (No Buffer)

A solution of trans-anethole (0.50 g, 3.4 mmol) in CH2Cl2 (10 mL) was stirred and cooled in an ice bath as a solution of MCPBA (0.92 g, 3.7 mmol) in CH2Cl2 (10 mL) was added dropwise. The resulting mixture was stirred in the ice bath for an additional 20 min. The mixture was washed with 10% Na2CO3 (5 x 15 mL) and saturated NaCl solution (15 mL). (Note 2) The organic layer was dried (Na2SO4) and the solvent was removed on a rotary evaporator (Note 2) to give 1.02 g (94%) of a viscous oil.

Procedure B (Buffered Epoxidation)

A biphasic mixture of a solution of trans-anethole (0.50 g, 3.4 mmol) in CH2Cl2 (10 mL) and 10% aqueous Na2CO3 solution (20 mL) was stirred well and cooled in an ice bath as a solution of MCPBA (1.4 g, 5.7 mmol, 1.7 equiv) in CH2Cl2 (20 mL) was added dropwise. After the addition was complete, the mixture was stirred for an additional 20 min in the ice bath. The organic layer was separated and washed with 10% aqueous Na2CO3 solution (5 x 25 mL) and saturated NaCl solution (15 mL). The organic layer was dried (Na2SO4) and the solvent was removed on a rotary evaporator to yield 0.52 g (95%) of a pleasant-smelling oil.


1. Based on the 1H NMR spectrum, there appears to be only one major product, which has been assigned structure 3 on mechanistic grounds. The ester carbonyl can also be clearly seen in the IR spectrum of 3.
2. The excess peracid is removed by washing with 10% aqueous Na2CO3. The absence of peracid can be tested using starch-iodide paper.
3. Solvent can also be removed using a water bath maintained at 50°C.

The IR spectrum of the unbuffered reaction product shows the presence of an OH group and also an ester carbonyl, suggesting the formation of a hydroxy ester. What is the theoretical yield of the product, assuming it is the epoxide? How does this compare to the observed yields? The observed yield of product in the absence of buffer is almost twice the theoretical yield. This gives the first hint that the expected product has not formed. Rather, the higher mass recovery must be due to formation of a product with a much larger formula weight. Buffered epoxidation gives product in a yield comparable to the theoretical yield of the expected epoxide.

Further Notes

* Commercial MCPBA, available from ACROS chemicals, is 70 % per acid by weight. We confirmed this by iodometric titration according to the procedure of Vogel (Textbook of Practical Organic Chemistry, 5th Ed.; Vogel, A. I.; Longman Scientific and Technical: New York, 1989, p 455)
* Because trans-anethole is very inexpensive, it was chosen rather than the much more expensive p-methoxystyrene.
* Peroxy acids (pKa ~8) are much weaker acids than carboxylic acids (pKa ~4). This allows for selective extraction of 3-chlorobenzoic acid. However, some of the MCPBA does react with Na2CO3, as is evident by the fact that the reaction does not go to completion when only 1 equiv. of MCPBA is used in presence of Na2CO3.
* The reaction mixture must be stirred very efficiently with a magnetic stir bar.
* If the organic layer is not extracted several times with Na2CO3, some of the 3-chlorobenzoic acid still remains in the organic layer.
* An alternative to the experiment described can be further purification of the ester by column chromatography (Rf 0.38, 40% ethyl acetate-60 % hexanes). The epoxide is not stable to silica gel.
* The ester and epoxide are not very volatile. Hence solvent can be easily removed using a water bath maintained at 50°C. The epoxide is very reactive and undergoes decomposition at higher temperatures.

Literature Cited

1. For examples of epoxidation see Bradley, L. M.; Springer, J. W.; Delate, G. M.; Goodman, A. J. Chem. Educ. 1997, 74, 1336. Garin, D. L.; Gamber, M.; Rowe, B. J. Chem. Educ. 1996, 73, 555.
2. Mohan, R. S.; Whalen, D. L. J. Org. Chem. 1993, 58, 2663-2669. Svensson, A.; Ulf, L. M.; Somfai, P. Synth. Commun. 1996, 26, 2875–2880.


  • Guest
Neolignan Impurity in Anethole Peracid Oxidation
« Reply #21 on: July 06, 2004, 11:02:00 PM »
Interesting article, they are touching upon the same subject as in this yesteryear post of mine:

Post 409525

(Rhodium: "Why asarone cannot be oxidized with peracids", Methods Discourse)

A neolignan-type impurity arising from the peracid oxidation reaction of anethole in the surreptitious synthesis of 4-methoxyamphetamine (PMA)
Dieter Waumans, Bas Hermans, Noël Bruneel and Jan Tytgat

Forensic Science International 143(2-3), 133-139 (2004)


The neolignan-type substance 2,4-dimethyl-3,5-bis(4’-methoxyphenyl)tetrahydrofuran is presented as a new forensic marker compound for the peracid oxidation of anethole. It is hypothesized that the formation of a stable intermediary carbocation in the hydrolysis reaction of anethole epoxide is not only responsible for the presence of 1,2-diols (and its esters) and 4-methoxyphenyl-2-propanone (PMP2P) but can also be the cause for the creation of this neolignan impurity due to interaction with anethole itself. Moreover, the applicability of this new forensic marker is demonstrated by its retrieval in clandestinely manufactured 4-methoxyamphetamine (PMA) preparations.

2.3. Synthesis procedures

2.3.1. Preparation of performic and peracetic acid

Performic acid was prepared by adding 6.8 g freezer-cold 30% hydrogen peroxide to 24.0 g formic acid (98–100%). This mixture is stirred for ca. 1 h before using it in further syntheses. Due to the instability of performic acid, the solution has to be prepared fresh for every experiment. A stock solution of peracetic acid was prepared by combining 288.0 g of 30% hydrogen peroxide and 4.0 g concentrated sulfuric acid with 100.0 g glacial acetic acid. The reaction mixture was stored for 5 days in a dark and well-ventilated place, after which it was ready for use [13].

2.3.2. Peracid oxidation of anethole Peracid oxidation of anethole dissolved in acetone

A 250 mL round-bottomed flask was equipped with a magnetic stirbar and a thermometer, and charged with a solution of 6.0 g anise oil in 30 mL acetone. Performic acid solution was added at such a rate that the reaction mixture temperature did not exceed 38 °C. After addition of the whole performic acid solution, the reaction was allowed to continue for ca 12 h. The reaction mixture was poured in its equal volume of cold distilled water (dH2O) and extracted with 2×50  of mL dichloromethane (DCM). The yellow organic phase was isolated and washed with 75 mL of dH2O, after which the organic phase was dried over Na2SO4. After evaporation of the solvent under reduced pressure, an aromatically scented yellow oil weighing 8.1 g remained.

Peracetic acid: substituting performic acid for 25.5 g peracetic acid solution yielded 5.8 g of a yellow oil after a similar work-up. Peracid oxidation of anethole dissolved in dichloromethane

A 250 mL round-bottomed flask was equipped with a magnetic stirbar and a thermometer, and charged with a solution of 6.0 g anise oil in 25 mL of DCM. Performic acid solution was added to the vigorously stirred reaction mixture at such a rate that the reaction mixture temperature did not exceed 38 °C. The reaction was allowed to continue another 12 h after addition of the final performic acid solution. Subsequently, the reaction mixture was carried over to a separation funnel and the organic layer isolated. The aqueous phase was extracted with 50 mL of DCM and thereupon discarded. The combined organic phases were washed with 3×50 mL of dH2O, after which it was dried over Na2SO4. This yielded 5.8 g of a bordeaux red viscous oil

Peracetic acid: substituting performic acid for 25.5 g peracetic acid yielded 4.9 g of a yellow oil after a similar work-up.

3. Results and discussion

3.1. 2,4-dimethyl-3,5-bis(4’-methoxyphenyl) tetrahydrofuran in the performic and peracetic acid oxidation reaction of anethole

The presence of (1) in four reaction mixtures has been evaluated: performic and peracetic acid have been chosen as peracids, while acetone and DCM have been utilized as solvent. These are the most trivial choices when it comes down to simulating the peracid oxidation of a propenylbenzene in clandestine laboratories. Experiments conducted in the past revealed that anise oil had been used as PMA precursor, i.e. applied without prior purification of anethole by means of fractional distillation under reduced pressure. Hence, our choice for anise oil and not anethole. Moreover, it is known that anise oil has a very high anethole content [14]. As a rule, anise oil consists for 80–90% of anethole (cis and trans isomers, (3a) and (3b), respectively; predominantly present as trans) and there usually is a small percentage of methyl chavicol ((3c), the allyl isomer of anethole) as well (Fig. 1).

Fig. 1.
Structural formulas: (1) 2,4-dimethyl-3,5-bis(4’-methoxyphenyl) tetrahydrofuran; (2) magnosalicin; (3a) cis-anethole; (3b) trans-anethole; (3c) methyl chavicol.

4. Conclusion

It has been found that 2,4-dimethyl-3,5-bis(4’-methoxyphenyl) tetrahydrofuran, a chemical substance with a neolignan structure, is formed during the performic and peracetic acid mediated oxidation of anethole. Taking into consideration the manner this impurity is formed during the reaction, it can be argued that this compound is a selective marker for the peracid oxidation reaction of anethole. Its applicability is demonstrated by its presence in clandestinely manufactured preparations. It should be noted, however, that the presence of this impurity depends on a great deal on the underground chemist’s work-up abilities and/or mindset. Since the new impurity is a high-boiling substance, it is unlikely to retrieve it if intermediary purification of PMP2P has occurred.


  • Guest
This yielded 5.8 g of a bordeaux red viscous...
« Reply #22 on: July 07, 2004, 10:16:00 AM »
This yielded 5.8 g of a bordeaux red viscous oil

I know I shouldn't be in here guys but I would like to add something that may, or may not, be of interest:

Performic oxidation of Anethole isolated from Illicum Verum.

61 grams anethole (isolated by double crystallisation)
21 grams Bicarb
45 mls 50% H2O2
85 mls 85% HCOOH
200 mls DCM

2 neck 1 litre FBF
500 ml dropping funnel
500 mm Leibig
Magnetic stirrer
50 mm stir bar

Performic was cooled in the freezer for 1 hour prior to addition and added, with vigorous stirring, in roughly 1/4 lots every 25 mins via drip. The performic acid was returned to the freezer until required. Cool water was added to a water bath surrounding the FBF, to keep a slight reflux going.

The performic addition was over in ~ 1 hour 45 mins. The exothermic reaction continued for roughly 3 hours after the performic addition.

After a total of 24 hours stir time the peracid was decanted and the DCM was washed twice with H2O and once with Brine.

The interesting thing is that reaction took on no color

No orange, No Bordeux Red......the upper acidic aqueous layer was cloudy white and the lower DCM/oil layer was clear with a slight beige tint.

The DCM was stripped and left a yellow oil that had an agreeable citrus type odor. One ml of this liquid was placed into a test tube of water and it sunk. The glycol was then heated to 80C. When heated, 100 ml MeOH, 135 ml 33% HCl & 195 ml H2O was added and this mixture was heated to reflux with good stirring for 3 hours 15 minutes, cooled, the lower oil portion was decanted and the aqueous layer extracted with 1 x 200 & 1 x 100 DCM.

The DCM extracts were pooled with the mother liquid, washed with 2 x 200 ml 5 % NaOH, 1 x 200 Brine and the DCM stripped.

Bisulfate tested positive for a yield of 62 grams raw PMP2P.

The distillation of the (assumed) PMP2P afforded 40 grams of clear/yellow oil using a shitty aspirator for vacuum.

Now, what I have noticed is that when Isosafrole and Anethole were distilled at atmospheric temperatures (with a hotplate temp that reached over 330 celcius) the contents of the Isosafrole distillation flask turned yellow/gold and the contents of the Anethole distillation flask turned Deep burgundy red.

I wonder if there is some correlation between this and the performic colorations?

.......I will get out of here now. :P  :)


  • Guest
> the contents of the Isosafrole ...
« Reply #23 on: July 07, 2004, 11:18:00 AM »
> the contents of the Isosafrole distillation flask turned yellow/gold
> and the contents of the Anethole distillation flask turned Deep
> burgundy red.

Even quite pure chemicals will discolour when heated to such temperatures, especially when oxygen is present.

> (2) magnosalicin

That's the compound I seem to remember is formed when you try anything like this with asarone, right?
There is another one I think, that is being produced when asarone is acidified. It consists of two condensed molecules of asarone but isn't symmetrical. Does anyone know its structure or name?


  • Guest
Why Asarone Cannot be Used in the Performic...
« Reply #24 on: July 07, 2004, 07:40:00 PM »
Why Asarone Cannot be Used
in the Performic Oxidation


  • Guest
Dimerization/Polymerization of Propenylbenzenes
« Reply #25 on: July 08, 2004, 03:25:00 AM »
According to abstracts of these articles by Balbiano et al; acid catalyzed dimerization/polymerization occurs with propenylbenzenes, not allylbenzenes  ::)  If that is the case, then probably the interior double bond comprises one side of the dimer; and the other side is probably a methoxy/methylenedioxy group, depending on which propenylbenzene is involved  ;)  Ber 36 1375-84 (1903) & 42 1502-6 (1909):



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Peracid Oxidation of Anethole: Impurities (PMA)
« Reply #26 on: July 14, 2004, 04:14:00 AM »
This is a poster presentation that describes the common impurtites that are formed during the peracid oxidation of anethole in the synthesis of PMA.


Introduction:The profiling of synthesis impurities is of utmost importance
in forensic chemistry. This poster presents an overview of
impurities formed during the peracid oxidation of anethole
(the major component of anise oil) in the synthesis of PMA.

I hope this is not been posted before, a quick search yielded no results here or rhodi's site.