Entry from British & World English dictionary
1 Chemistry Relating to or denoting a reaction that involves a concerted rearrangement of bonding in which all the bonds broken or formed in the reaction lie on a closed ring, whether or not a cyclic molecule is involved.
- In pericyclic reactions, bonds are made or broken in a concerted cyclic transition state.
- But, because the mechanism for the reaction is pericyclic, there is retention of geometry such that quite specific products can be generated.
- Chemists everywhere are now familiar with the Woodward-Hoffmann rules for pericyclic reactions, which tied a whole list of cyclizations and rearrangements into a coherent bundle.
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