Do nucleophiles add to carbonyl carbons?

1 Answer
Jan 2, 2015

Yes, the many of the reactions of carbonyl compounds involve nucleophilic attack at the carbonyl carbon.

The carbonyl carbon has a partial positive charge, so it is a perfect target for attack by a nucleophile.

Some reactions that involve the addition of a nucleophile to a carbonyl carbon are:

Reduction by LiAlH₄

Grignard Reaction

Formation of cyanohydrins

Hydrolysis of esters

Formation of esters from acid chlorides

Conversion of esters to amides

Here's a video about nucleophilic addition to carbonyl compounds.