Background: The Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) is one of the most employed techniques in structural elucidation of organic compounds. In addition to its use in structural characterization, it has been widely employed in the investigation of reaction mechanisms, especially those involving catalysis.
Objective: In this review, we aim to provide recent examples of the interface of NMR and organocatalysis reaction mechanism.
Results: Selected examples of different approaches for mechanism elucidation will be presented, such as isotopic effect, catalyst labelling and online reaction monitoring. A discussion involving the use of solid- state NMR will also be disclosed.
Conclusion: NMR consists of a non-destructive technique, extremely useful in the real-time identification of intermediates in crude reaction mixtures. With the advent of two-dimensional experiments and high field NMR spectrometers, the reports of studies involving mechanistic elucidation was were greatly enhanced. In this context, nowadays NMR appears as a powerful tool for the comprehension of reaction mechanisms, including the possibility of the proposal of unknown reaction mechanisms within organocatalysis.