Acetoxy group

"AcO" redirects here. For other uses, see aco (disambiguation).
The structure of the acetoxy group (blue).

Acetoxy group, abbreviated AcO or OAc, is a chemical functional group of the structure CH3-C(=O)-O-. It differs from the acetyl group CH3-C(=O)- by the presence of one additional oxygen atom. The name acetoxy is the short form of acetyl-oxy.


An acetoxy group may be used as a protection for an alcohol functionality in a synthetic route although the protecting group itself is called an acetyl group.

Alcohol protection

There are several options of introducing an acetoxy functionality in a molecule from an alcohol (in effect protecting the alcohol by acetylation):

An alcohol is not a particularly strong nucleophile and, when present, more powerful nucleophiles like amines will react with the above-mentioned reagents in preference to the alcohol.

Alcohol deprotection

For deprotection (regeneration of the alcohol)

See also

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