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Synthetic Applications of Aldol Reactions

As we are beginning to see, aldol additions and aldol condensations are important methods for carbon–carbon bond formation. They also result in β-hydroxy and α,β-unsaturated carbonyl compounds that are themselves useful for further synthetic transformations. Some representative reactions are shown below.
    Thus far we have only considered examples of aldol reactions where the reactant forms a product by dimerization. In the coming sections we shall discuss the use of aldol reactions to more generally prepare β-hydroxy and α,β-unsaturated carbonyl compounds. We shall then study reactions called conjugate addition reactions, by which we can further build on the α,β-unsaturated carbonyl systems that result from aldol condensations.

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