Betti reaction

What is Betti reaction?

Betti Reaction is a specific form of the Mannich Reaction reported by Betti in 1900. It involves combining an ammonia, a 2-naphthol, and at least one benzaldehyde to yield either a phenyl β-naphtholaminomethane or am-naphthoxazine derivative, resulting in the formation of α-aminobenzylphenols.

Betti Reaction
Betti Reaction
  • R1 = alkyl, aryl
  • R2 = H, alkyl, aryl
  • R3 = H, alkyl aryl
Betti Reaction
Betti Reaction

Upon acidic hydrolysis, the latter compound decomposes to the hydrochloride salt of the former molecule, along with a benzaldehyde. This reaction is commonly known as Betti’s condensation or the Betti reaction, and the corresponding β-naphtholmethylamines are often referred to as Betti’s amines or Betti bases.

The versatility of Betti reaction makes it a promising candidate for producing chiral ligands and auxiliaries that could be utilized in asymmetric synthesis.


  • M. Betti, Gazz. Chim. Ital. 30 II, 301 (1900)
  • M. Betti, Gazz. Chim. Ital. 33 II, 2 (1903)