Sciencemadness Discussion Board

10 most important name reactions

Syn the Sizer - 4-4-2020 at 19:35

Hey everyone, I am wondering what people feel are the 10 most crucial name reactions. I have been wanting to focus on better understanding name reactions. I have been reading on the Aldol addition/condensation reactions and have considered doing a couple of the reactions I have discovered.


draculic acid69 - 4-4-2020 at 20:17

Grignard rxn

Texium - 4-4-2020 at 20:20

I don’t think that there’s an objective list, but here’s 10 good ones off the top of my head that you should look into, in no particular order:

-Grignard Reaction
-Wolff-Kishner Reduction and Clemmensen Reduction (same function, different reagents)
-Wittig Reaction
-Claisen Condensation
-Sandmeyer Reaction
-Fischer Indole Synthesis
-Diels-Alder Reaction
-Mannich Reaction
-Hofmann Degradation
-Michael Addition/Robinson Annulation

There’s also a whole host of palladium catalyzed couplings that are very important and useful, but not very practical for the amateur. Some important variants:
Suzuki Coupling, Heck Coupling, Sonogashira Coupling, Stille Coupling

j_sum1 - 4-4-2020 at 21:16

Birch reduction?
Fischer esterification?

draculic acid69 - 4-4-2020 at 22:00

Excellent suggestions guys.these are the most common rxns one usually encounters in an amateur lab setting.

Sulaiman - 4-4-2020 at 23:11

Haber–Bosch process and Ostwald process
not sure if they qualify as named reactions, but they are super important.

Sigmatropic - 4-4-2020 at 23:15

Based on FMO theory there are only 9 reactions. Perhaps 12 if you count the pericyclic ones as separate reactions. All you need to know.

Scrap that, there are only 9 reactions.

[Edited on 5-4-2020 by Sigmatropic]

Metacelsus - 5-4-2020 at 05:34

Only 9 reactions?

I think you're forgetting all the radical reactions. (Or possibly remembering radical reactions, and forgetting photochemical ones.)

Let's make a list. I'll go over my notes from undergrad, and count reverse reactions as the same reaction.

Non-radical, non-pericyclic:
Concerted nucleophilic additions (eg SN2, or addition to an alkene)
Heterolysis (carbocation formation)

Pericyclic (could be non-photochemical or photochemical, so x2):
Cycloadditions (eg Diels-Alder)
Electrocyclic rearrangement (eg cyclobutene <-> butadiene)
Sigmatropic (eg Cope or Claisen)
Group transfer (eg ene reaction)

Bond homolysis (and reverse, radical recombination)
Single-electron transfer

So, that's already 13 classes of reactions just from my undergrad O-chem notes.

And there are some more weird things which I'm not sure how to classify, like the Bergman cyclization. This list probably isn't complete.

[Edited on 2020-4-5 by Metacelsus]

clearly_not_atara - 5-4-2020 at 05:37

zts's list is pretty good, but I would suggest some changes:

- replace Claisen with Knoevenagel condensation
- drop Hofmann and Mannich rxns
- add Huisgen "click" cycloaddition
- honestly not sure if Grignard should be listed since everyone seems to use lithium these days
- add Swern oxidation (with its many variations)
- add Mitsunobu reaction
- would probably choose Heck as the primary representative of Pd-catalyzed couplings

I'm not sure if there's a general term for alkyne or allene-mediated annulation but that's a pretty important technique today also.

Syn the Sizer - 5-4-2020 at 09:49

Quote: Originally posted by Sulaiman  
Haber–Bosch process and Ostwald process
not sure if they qualify as named reactions, but they are super important.

I didn't think the Aldol reaction was a name reaction but when I googled name reactions it shows up on lists. I always though name reactions were named after the Chemist. I have found lists with tons of reactions and it gets overwhelming so that's why I came here to ask.

Thanks everyone for the replies.

DrIronic101 - 7-4-2020 at 12:30

Friedel-Crafts Acylation
Henry Reaction
Grignard Reaction
Knoelvagel Condensation
Fisher Esterification
Williamson Ether Synthesis
Reductive Amination (not technically a named one but still super important)

To name a few.

mackolol - 8-4-2020 at 01:50

Reimer - Tiemann reaction is very useful
Meerwein - Ponndorf - Verley reduction is the most basic reaction when you want to reduce ketone to alcohol or vice wersa

These are the two that come to my mind at the moment.

rockyit98 - 8-4-2020 at 04:13

Hofmann rearrangement

Syn the Sizer - 8-4-2020 at 21:56

Awesome. Lots to look into and study, thanks again everyone.