Nature is chiral

Web Adapted Version of the Nobel Poster from the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences

  The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2001     
       
     
 

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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.
 

To cite this section
MLA style: Nature is chiral. NobelPrize.org. Nobel Media AB 2018. Thu. 13 Dec 2018. <https://www.nobelprize.org/prizes/chemistry/2001/9092-nature-is-chiral/>

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