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N,N,N',N'-Tetramethylethylenediamine is used with ammonium persulfate to catalyze the polymerization of acrylamide and bis-acrylamide to get polyacrylamide gels. It is also used for the separation of proteins or nucleic acids. Further, it is employed as a ligand for metal ions like zinc and copper. It is actively involved in the formation of anionic organometallic complex.
Widely used complexing agent in lithiation reactions, often giving enhanced reactivity in otherwise difficult metallations: J. Am. Chem. Soc., 92, 4664 (1970). Subsequent work by Collum and others indicated that the situation may be much less straightforward than was previously thought, but the effect of TMEDA is likely to be most pronounced in the absence of strong donor solvents such as THF. For a discussion of the factors involved, see: Acc. Chem. Res., 25, 448 (1992). Under some conditions also, TMEDA itself may undergo lithiation: Organometallics, 13, 5173 (1994).
Used in combination with alkyllithiums in the ortho-metallation of aromatics; see, e.g.: Org. Synth. Coll., 6, 478 (1988); Org. Synth. Coll., 9, 559 (1998). For discussion of the dramatic acceleration of the rate of ortho-lithiation of anisole in the presence of TMEDA, effective also in sub-stoichiometric amounts, see: Tetrahedron Lett., 35, 385 (1994). See also Tetrahedron Lett., 35, 401 (1994), J. Org. Chem., 62, 3024 (1997) for further discussion of the role of TMEDA in ortho-metallation.
The oxidative coupling of terminal acetylenes to diynes, by O2 in the presence of CuCl, is improved by addition of TMEDA as a complexing agent: J. Org. Chem., 27, 3320 (1962). For example and discussion, see: Org. Synth. Coll., 8, 63 (1993):
In catalytic amounts, produces up to a 20-fold increase in reaction rate in aqueous Michael additions catalyzed by ytterbium triflate: J. Org. Chem., 71, 352 (2006).
Zhao, N.; Liu, L.; Wang, F.; Li, J.; Zhang, W. Copper/N, N, N', N'-Tetramethylethylenediamine-Catalyzed Synthesis of N-Substituted Benzoheterocycles via C-S Cross-Coupling at Ambient Temperature in Water. Adv. Synth. Catal. 2014, 356 (11-12), 2575-2579.
Cheng, X.; Zhang, Y.; Deb, S.; Minitti, M. P.; Gao, Y.; Jónsson, H.; Weber, P. M. Ultrafast structural dynamics in Rydberg excited N, N, N', N'-tetramethylethylenediamine: conformation dependent electron lone pair interaction and charge delocalization. Chem. Sci. 2014, 5 (11), 4394-4403.
Hazard Statements: H225-H302-H314-H332-H335
Highly flammable liquid and vapour. Harmful if swallowed. Causes severe skin burns and eye damage. Harmful if inhaled. May cause respiratory irritation.
Precautionary Statements: P210-P233-P235-P240-P241-P242-P243-P260-P264b-P270-P271-P280-P303+P361+P353-P304+P340-P305+P351+P338-P310-P330-P331-P363-P370+P378q-P501c
Keep away from heat/sparks/open flames/hot surfaces. - No smoking. Keep container tightly closed. Keep cool. Ground/bond container and receiving equipment. Use explosion-proof electrical/ventilating/lighting/ equipment. Use only non-sparking tools. Take precautionary measures against static discharge. Do not breathe dust/fume/gas/mist/vapours/spray. Wash face, hands and any exposed skin thoroughly after handling Do not eat, drink or smoke when using this product. Use only outdoors or in a well-ventilated area. Wear protective gloves/protective clothing/eye protection/face protection. IF ON SKIN (or hair): Remove/Take off immediately all contaminated clothing. Rinse skin with water/shower. IF INHALED: Remove to fresh air and keep at rest in a position comfortable for breathing. IF IN EYES: Rinse cautiously with water for several minutes. Remove contact lenses, if present and easy to do. Continue rinsing. Immediately call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician. Rinse mouth. Do NOT induce vomiting. Wash contaminated clothing before reuse. In case of fire: Use CO2, dry chemical, or foam Dispose of contents/ container to an approved waste disposal plant