Organic Chemistry

Reactions of Organic Compounds

What’s a pericyclic reaction?

A cycloaddition reaction is actually a type of pericyclic reaction, but the term “pericyclic” includes other types of reactions. The textbook definition of pericyclic is a reaction whose transition state has a cyclic structure (i.e., the electrons are flowing in a closed loop). In addition to cycloaddition reactions (which exchange two π-bonds for two σ-bonds, or vice versa), pericyclic reactions include sigmatropic reactions, electrocyclic reactions, and cheletropic reactions (and a few others which we’ll ignore).


This is a web preview of the "The Handy Chemistry Answer Book" app. Many features only work on your mobile device. If you like what you see, we hope you will consider buying. Get the App