Step 1: Knoevenagel Condensation between the β-ketoester and aldehyde
Click the structures and reaction arrows in sequence to view the 3D models and animations respectively
The first step of the reaction is the attack of the β-ketoester enolate on the aldehyde, followed by an E1cB elimination to give an unsaturated carbonyl compound.
Note: Step 1 and Step 2 can happen in either order
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