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The class of organic compounds having covalently a bonded chlorine atom is called organic chlorides. Their wide structural variety and divergent chemical properties lead to a broad range of named reactions and applications. Chloride substituents modify the physical properties of organic compounds in several ways. They are typically denser than water due to the presence of chlorine, which has a high atomic weight. Chlorinated organic compounds are found in nearly every class of biomolecules. Alkyl chlorides, as versatile building blocks in organic chemistry, are used in the preparation of alcohols, thioethers, alkenes, alkynes, esters, and Grignard reagents.
Organic chlorides such as vinyl chloride are of great interest in industries for their use in the preparation of polyvinylchloride (PVC), one of the most widely produced plastic polymers. Organic chlorides are used as electrical insulators and heat transfer agents. The Suzuki-Miyaura coupling of aryl chlorides is used to synthesize commercially important biaryl derivatives, which have a wide range of industrial applications, including herbicides, polymers, liquid crystals, and efficient ligands for catalysis. The natural organo chloride epibatidine, an alkaloid isolated from tree frogs, has potent analgesic effects, and has stimulated research into new kinds of pain medication.