I'm performing the reaction between acetone and 2-nitrobenzaldehyde catalysed by (L)-Proline, as answered to one of my questions a while ago: Simple experiments involving enantiomer synthesis
However, while the literature specified using 1 mmol of (L)-Proline in 20ml of solution, due to the cost of the materials and the budget available, I've only been able to use a fraction of that, around 0.01mmol. I've scaled down the entire experiment to 5 ml to try and compensate for this.
The issue is, I've left this solution reacting for a long period of time (12+ hours) and I'm not seeing any optical activity at all. With the reduced concentrations, I'd have expected to see a lot less activity than the original literature specifies, but to see at least some indication that my reaction is working.
Are the concentrations of (L)-Proline simply too small for any significant reaction to take place? Or can there be some other reason why my reaction isn't working? Note: I'm a chemistry 'newbie', so don't assume anything!