High pressure activation is presented as a potent synthetic strategy
depending on the magnitude of the activation volume. Coupling of high
pressure with ancillary activation methods such as catalysis widens the
methodology. The application fields are reviewed: Diels-Alder reactions, 1,3-
dipolar cycloadditions, [2+2] cycloadditions, Michael and related reactions,
Baylis-Hillman additions etc... Many valuable substances can be synthesized
in this way. Some recent developments are outlined, directed toward
generation of pressure by water freezing, supramolecular chemistry,
inhibition of steric hindrance.
Laboratoire de Piezochimie Organique (UMR CNRS 7123), Faculte de Chimie, Universite Louis Pasteur, 67008 Strasbou France.