Cannizzaro Reaction

What are Named Reactions in Organic Chemistry?

There exist several reactions in organic chemistry which are quite valuable in the synthesis of some specific organic compounds. These reactions have been named after their discoverers. The naming of these reactions with the names of their discoverers is a practice adopted by various chemists during the development of organic chemistry over the 20th century. An example of such a reaction would be the Cannizzaro Reaction, named after its discoverer StanislaoCannizzaro.

In many cases, these named organic chemical reactions have been modified to either solve one of their disadvantages or to yield a different product entirely. Such an example of a modification to an organic named reaction would be the Tishchenko reaction, which is considered as a modification to the aforementioned Cannizzaro reaction.

Some important named reactions in organic chemistry are briefly described below:

  • Aldol Condensation: the reaction in which an enolate ion reacts with a carbonyl compound to form a beta-hydroxy aldehyde or a beta-hydroxy ketone which is, in turn, dehydrated to give a conjugated enone.
  • Balz-Schiemann Reaction: this reaction showcases the conversion of arylamines to aryl fluorides via the diazotization and successive thermal decomposition of the derived product.
  • Clemmensen Reduction: in this named reaction in organic chemistry, ketones or aldehydes are reduced to alkanes with the help of zinc amalgam and hydrochloric acid.
  • Etard reaction: in this organic chemical reaction, a heterocyclic bound or an aromatic methyl group is directly oxidized into an aldehyde with the help of chromyl chloride.
  • Gabriel Phthalimide Synthesis: the Gabriel Synthesis is an organic chemical reaction in which primary amines are obtained from primary alkyl halides.
  • Gattermann Reaction: the Gattermann reaction is also known as the Gattermannsalicylaldehyde synthesis and it is an organic chemical reaction in which aromatic compounds are formed from hydrogen cyanide in the presence of a Friedel Crafts catalyst.
  • Grignard Synthesis: the Grignard Synthesis reaction is an organic chemical reaction in which aryl magnesium halides, vinyl magnesium halides, or alkyl magnesium halides, which are also referred to as Grignard Reagents, are added to a carbonyl group in a given ketone or aldehyde. \Swarts Reaction: the Swarts reaction is an organic chemical reaction involving the exchange of halogens between two organic compounds. It is generally performed with alkyl halides.

Most of the mechanisms of these organic named reactions in chemistry have been understood. However, some mechanisms are still the cause for debate in the scientific community due to the various pathways in which a chemical reaction may proceed. Some of these mechanisms are also based on various theories explaining chemical bonding, such as the Valence Bond Theory, the molecular orbital theory, etc.

Some of these named chemical reactions are also executed industrially for the production of some very important organic compounds. An example of such a reaction would be the haloform reaction, which was used industrially for the production of chloroform, bromoform, and iodoform.

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