Simple and Efficient Process for the Large-Scale Preparation of Agomelatine: An Antidepressant Drug

A simple and efficient process for the large-scale preparation of agomelatine (1), an antidepressant drug is, described. Agomelatine was prepared in a linear manner starting from readily available, inexpensive 2-naphthol. Key steps in the synthesis are Friedel–Crafts acylation of 2-naphthyl acetate with chloroacetyl chloride, reduction of keto intermediate, and nucleophilic displacement of chloro intermediate with sodium diformylamide. A systemic approach was described to streamline the process into a robust scalable process by controlling the impurities.