Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



Major Professor

George W. Kabalka

Committee Members

Shane Foister, Bin Zhao, Engin Serpersu


This dissertation summarizes the recent use of boron and transition metal halides to form new carbon-carbon bonds. Several novel reactions have been discovered. These include the haloallylation of aryl aldehydes with boron trihalide; alkyne-aldehyde couplings mediated by boron trihalide to give either (Z,Z)-1,5-dihaloalkenes or (Z,E)-1,5- dihaloalkenes; dehydroxylation of benzylic alcohols and in situ generated benzylic alcohol salts with iron(III) chloride and triethylsilane to afford diarylmethanes; and, the alkenylation of allylic, benzylic, and propargylic alcohols with phenylacetylenes and titanium(IV) halide. The results of these studies strongly imply a cationic mechanism. The reaction methodology of the research described herein can be characterized as atomefficient, environmentally friendly, and capable of generating the desired products in good to excellent yields.

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