The synthesis of a 5,7-dichloropyrido[4,3-d]pyrimidine scaffold is described. The chlorine at position 5 can selectively be displaced by different palladium-catalyzed cross-coupling reactions and nucleophilic aromatic substitutions. In the subsequent step, the chlorine at position 7 can be further derivatized. The described synthetic sequence allows for the construction of a diverse pyrido[4,3-d]pyrimidine library with structural variations at positions 5 and 7. (c) 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.