A carbonyl group is a functional group consisting of a carbon atom joined to an oxygen atom by a double bond. The carbonyl group is present in many of the most synthetically important compounds, including aldehydes, ketones, esters, amides, and other carboxylic acid derivatives. The electronegativity imbalance between the carbon and the oxygen makes the carbon an electrophile that can be exploited synthetically in a number of different ways.
One of the earliest named reactions involving carbonyl group chemistry is the Aldol reaction, which involves the addition of the enol/enolate of a carbonyl compound to an aldehyde or ketone.
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