Issue Date: December 19, 2011
With the help of a palladium-based cationic cage, researchers in Japan have coaxed a Knoevenagel condensation to take place under neutral conditions in water (J. Am. Chem. Soc., DOI: 10.1021/ja210068f). Knoevenagel condensations are reversible reactions involving attack of a carbanion of a 1,3-dicarbonyl compound on an aldehyde or a ketone followed by dehydration. It’s tough to do the transformation in water because the solvent pushes the . . .
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