A milder reducing agent. Commonly used for conversion of aldehydes and ketones to the corresponding alcohols in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals and other fine chemicals.1 Also used as a hydrogen source for fuel cell systems and a foaming agent for rubbers.2 NaBH4-MeOH system reduces esters to the corresponding alcohols such as benzyl benzoate to benzyl alcohol.3 Recently applied to conversion of alcohols into imines,4 reductive amination of aldehydes and ketones,5 chemoselective reduction of various carboxylic esters to their corresponding alcohols, 6 and synthesis of monosubstituted malononitriles.7
1. “Sodium Borohydride” in Encyclopedia of Reagents for Organic Synthesis 2004, J. Wiley & Sons, New York.
2. J. Power Sources 2005, 143, 1.
3. Arkivoc 2006, 128.
4. Org. Lett. 2001, 3, 1637.
5. Tetrahedron 2005, 61, 5725.
6. Synthesis 2009, 660.
7. Synthesis 2008, 279.