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  The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2001     
       
   

Nature is chiral

 
 
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The word chiral derives from the Greek word ceir (cheir), meaning hand. Our hands are chiral - the right hand is a mirror image of the left - as are most of life's molecules such as (R)-alanine and (S)-alanine, which are mirror images of each other.

In our cells we find only one form of this amino acid, (S)-alanine. The same is true for enzymes, antibodies, hormones and DNA.

 

 

 

 
     
 
Based on materials from the 2001 Nobel Poster for Chemistry.
Web Adapted Version of the Nobel Poster from the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences
 


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