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Lactam: Wikis


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From left to right, general structures of a β-lactam, a γ-lactam and a δ-lactam.

A lactam (the noun is a portmanteau of the words lactone + amide) is a cyclic amide. Prefixes indicate how many carbon atoms (apart from the carbonyl moiety) are present in the ring: β-lactam (2 carbon atoms outside the carbonyl, 4 ring atoms in total), γ-lactam (3 and 5), δ-lactam (4 and 6). Beta β, gamma γ and delta δ are the second, third and fourth letters in the alphabetical order of the Greek alphabet, respectively.



General synthetic methods exist for the organic synthesis of lactams.

Iodolactamization reaction
  • Lactams form by copper catalyzed 1,3-dipolar cycloaddition of alkynes and nitrones in the Kinugasa reaction


See also


  1. ^ Spencer Knapp, Frank S. Gibson Organic Syntheses, Coll. Vol. 9, p.516 (1998); Vol. 70, p.101 (1992) Online article


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