The molecule behind a Biblical plague?
A simple natural molecule 2-methoxyphenol, also known as guaiacol could be a factor in the voracious swarming of locusts, which have devastated crops since before even Biblical plagues.
Marine bacteria can bubblewrap iron
A unique molecule that self-assembles in the presence of iron allows two different groups of marine bacteria to scavenge the iron they need to survive direct from their watery surroundings very effectively, according to US scientists.
A compound found in a Native American herbal remedy could hold the key to overcoming antibiotic resistance. 5'-Methoxyhydnocarpin (5'-MHC) extracted from the leaves of the barberry plant (traditionally used to treat infections, skin problems and stomach complaints) can work alongside antibiotics to deactivate even 'superbug' strains of Golden Staph - the methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. This dreaded bacterium causes thousands of hospital deaths every year through inadvertent infection.
Doing it like plants
Branched polymers that carry light-trapping molecules like so many tiny leaves, could provide a clue to mimicking the process of photosynthesis in green plants, according to US research. Jean Fréchet and his team at the University of California at Berkeley, have developed a new class of hyperbranched polymer that bears an array of porphyrin units.
The chemical industry is under constant attack for allegedly producing compounds bad for our health. Now, there is some good news from the Yale Cancer Center (New Haven, CT). Researchers there, in work funded by the National Cancer Institute and the National Institute of Environmental Health and Safety, have found there to be no link between breast cancer risk and the polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and the organochloride compound DDE, two of the groups of compounds.
Introduction to Surface Chemistry
Classic Organic Reactions
Dr Rainer Koch, Matthias Lemmler:
"Nomenclature: The Next Generation"
The growing influence of electronic media in the field of chemistry has inevitably led to an increase in the importance of consistent naming of chemical structures. Last year witnessed some significant progress in the development of software for the purpose of naming. Two new programs were introduced: AutoNom 4.0, the latest version of Beilstein Informations systeme, which is well known on the German market; and Name Pro 4.0 from ACD/Labs (Advanced Chemistry Development, Toronto, Canada). What possibilities and improvements do these competitors have to offer, and what does the end user stand to gain?
(from: Journal of the German Chemical Society - read full article in English or in German)
Mr Kit Swinfen, UK Association for Science Education
"The Need for Early Nomenclature Standards in the High School Science
At the recent IUPAC Strategy Round Table at the National Academy of
Sciences, Washington, DC (10-11 March, 2000) to discuss representations of
Molecular Structure, Nomenclature and its alternatives, this speech was
presented. Mr Kit Swinfen is a member of the UK Association for Science
Foundation (firstname.lastname@example.org). I believe this speech, while highly
amusing and enjoyable, carries the spirit of an issue which I personally
believe to be of great importance - the value of including early
nomenclature standards into the secondary school system agenda as soon as
possible. I believe this view should be seriously considered by North
American school systems also.
- Antony Williams, ACD/Labs