Organic compounds containing the group –CN bound to an organic group. Nitriles are made by reaction between potassium cyanide and haloalkanes in alcoholic solution, e.g.KCN+CH3Cl → CH3CN+KCl An alternative method is dehydration of amides CH3CONH2 – H2O → CH3CN They can be hydrolysed to amides and carboxylic acids and can be reduced to amines.
KCN+CH3Cl → CH3CN+KCl
CH3CONH2 – H2O → CH3CN
http://www.acdlabs.com/iupac/nomenclature/93/r93_557.htm Information about IUPAC nomenclature