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Chemical Name 2-Phenylacetamide
Synonyms Benzenediacetamide; 2-Phenylacetamide; NSC 1877; Phenacetamide;
CAS Number 103-81-1
Molecular Formula C₈H₉NO
Appearance White to Off-White Solid
Melting Point 155-157°C
Molecular Weight 135.16
Storage 4°C
Solubility Chloroform (Slightly), DMSO (Slightly), Methanol (Slightly, Heated)
Category Building Blocks; Miscellaneous;
Applications 2-Phenylacetamide is used as a pharmaceutical intermediate.

2-Phenylacetamide: Properties, Uses, and Safety Concerns

2-Phenylacetamide is a chemical compound with the molecular formula C8H9NO. It is also known as alpha-toluamide or phenylacetamide. This white crystalline powder has a slightly bitter taste and is used in various industries. In this article, we will discuss the properties, uses, and safety concerns associated with 2-phenylacetamide.


Properties of 2-Phenylacetamide

2-Phenylacetamide has a molecular weight of 135.16 g/mol and a melting point of 159-162°C. It is soluble in water and most organic solvents, such as ethanol and acetone. This compound is stable under normal conditions but can decompose at high temperatures. It is also known to be hygroscopic, which means it can absorb moisture from the air.

Uses of 2-Phenylacetamide

2-Phenylacetamide has various industrial applications, including the following:

1. Pharmaceuticals

2-Phenylacetamide is used as an intermediate in the synthesis of various pharmaceuticals, such as acetaminophen and lidocaine.

2. Dyes

2-Phenylacetamide is used as a starting material for the production of various dyes, such as azo dyes.

3. Insecticides

2-Phenylacetamide is used as an insecticide to control pests, such as mosquitoes and flies.

4. Plasticizers

2-Phenylacetamide is used as a plasticizer in the production of various plastics and resins.

5. Other Uses

2-Phenylacetamide is also used in the production of rubber, perfumes, and other chemical compounds.

Safety Concerns of 2-Phenylacetamide

2-Phenylacetamide is considered to be a low-toxicity compound. However, exposure to large quantities can cause skin and eye irritation, respiratory problems, and nausea. In addition, 2-Phenylacetamide can be flammable and reactive with oxidizing agents, such as nitric acid and hydrogen peroxide.

Regulatory Measures for 2-Phenylacetamide

In the United States, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has set a permissible exposure limit (PEL) of 15 mg/m³ for 2-phenylacetamide in the workplace. The European Union has also established regulations for the use of 2-phenylacetamide in various industries.


2-Phenylacetamide is a useful chemical compound with various industrial applications. However, it has some safety concerns that need to be addressed. Regulatory measures have been established to limit exposure to this compound and ensure its safe use in various industries.

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