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Process for the preparation of 3,4-dihydroxybutanoic acid and salts thereof

Image Number 3 for United States Patent #5374773.

A process for the preparation of 3,4-dihydroxybutanoic acid (1) and salts thereof from a glucose source containing 1,4-1inked glucose as a substituent is described. The process uses an alkali metal hdyroxide and hydrogen peroxide to convert the glucose source to (1). The compound (1) is useful as a chemical intermediate to naturally occurring fatty acids and is used to prepare 3,4-dihydroxybutanoic acid-gamma-lactone (2) and furanone (3), particularly stereoisomers of these compounds.

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