Recent progress in molecular recognition

  • Julius RebekJr.
Conference paper
Part of the Topics in Current Chemistry book series (TOPCURRCHEM, volume 149)


Molecular recognition is the most recent term for chemical phenomena as old as Fischer's lock-and-key notion of enzyme action. Over the years, as model systems became available a number of other terms have been used: inclusion complexes, weak molecular complexes and host-guest chemistry, but molecular recognition has the advantage of being appreciated by a wider audience. Synthetic organic chemists, for example, understand it as reagent selectivity whereas mechanistic chemists can interpret it in terms of stereoelectronic effects. The recent, gradual drift of organic chemists into more biorelevant research has resulted in a rich array of sophisticated model systems. Such models are intended to imitate the specific recognition of substrates by their enzymes, antigens by antibodies or messengers by their receptors. A number of recent reviews1) and monographs2) on this subject have appeared, and even an entire journal is devoted to inclusion phenomena3). These vehicles provide momentum to a rapidly growing field. In the present review, we explore some of the more recent issues and discoveries.


Crown Ether Molecular Recognition Malonic Acid Aryl Amine Glutaric Acid 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Julius RebekJr.
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of ChemistryUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA

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