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The effect of the tertiary amines triethyl, tri-n-propyl, and tri-n-butylamines on the chlorination of 6-methyluracil by phosphorus oxychloride was studied. A comparison with the reaction of preformed 2,4-dichloro-6-methylpyrimidine and triethylamine in toluene was made. The reaction in phosphorus oxychloride in the presence of triethylamine afforded low yields of 2-diethylamino derivative after short heating periods and high yields of the 2,4-bis(diethylamino) derivative after 188 hours of boiling. Heating the preformed 2,4-dichloro-6-methylpyrimidine in toluene in the presence of triethylamine yielded primarily the 2-diethylaminopyrimidine along with a small amount of the 4-diethylamino isomer. After 188 hours, the product mixture was composed of 87% 2-diethylamino and 13% of 4-diethylamino isomers. Although substituent orientation was essentially the same, the yields of products seem to have been influenced by the dielectric constants of the solvents. Tri-n-propylamine in phosphorus oxychloride yielded solely the dichloropyrimidine, even after 188 hours of boiling, and is recommended as the amine of choice in such chlorination reactions. Tri-n-butylamine was the same after 48 hours, but 4% of 4-di-n-butylaminopyrimidine was found after 188 hours of heating

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Journal of heterocyclic chemistry. 24:205-209.

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