Asymmetric Synthesis

Published: | Updated: December 22, 2018

Definition - What does Asymmetric Synthesis mean?

Asymmetric synthesis is a chemical reaction (or sequence of reactions) in which one or more elements of chirality are formed in a substrate molecule to produce equal amounts of stereoisomeric compounds. In other words, it is the method of preparing chemical compounds via a technique that favors the creation of one stereoisomer over another. Understanding asymmetric synthesis is important when engineering and producing chemicals.

Corrosionpedia explains Asymmetric Synthesis

During asymmetric synthesis, the chemical reaction affects the symmetry of the compound's molecules. The compound is therefore converted into unequal portions of elements with structural dissymmetry at the affected center. This reaction usually involves organic compounds that feature carbon atoms bonded to other atoms or a group of atoms.

Chiral compounds are mostly used in the medical, pharmaceutical and specialty chemical industries. However, asymmetric synthesis is also essential in the production of agrochemicals, flavors and fragrances.

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