Stereoselectivity of β irradiation of D,L-tryptophan in aqueous solution

W. Darge, I. Laczkó, W. Thiemann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

33 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A POSSIBLE connection between the molecular asymmetry of living matter and the intrinsic asymmetry of elementary particles1 was first suggested by Vester2. All the experiments based essentially on the non-conservation of parity in weak interactions3,4 can be classified as follows: (1) It is assumed that L- and D-enantiomers are not exact mirror images of each other but differ in their scalar physicochemical properties 5,6. Parity-violating forces originated by weak interactions could in principle give rise to different bond strengths in enantiomer molecules. If the recently discovered neutral weak currents turn out to be of vector and axialvector type - an opinion favoured by present neutrino experiments 7-9 - there is necessarily an interference between parity-conserving electromagnetic interaction and parity-violating weak interaction; it might, however, be very small23. The question whether a particular molecular quantum state does allow for the actual occurrence of a seizable parity-violating effect has, to our knowledge, not yet been settled. (2) It is supposed that the almost exclusive existence of one enantiomer in the biosphere is due to the asymmetric interaction of longitudinally polarised β rays with molecules (interaction either with racemic mixtures or with molecules undergoing reaction to form asymmetric compounds) during the early history of the earth. With this view it is believed that an induced optical activity is a result of the natural radiation from isotopes in the earth's crust 4,10,11. Experiments which aimed to generate optical activity in this manner are summarised in Table 1.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)522-524
Number of pages3
JournalNature
Volume261
Issue number5560
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1976

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Parity
Tryptophan
Optical Rotation
Background Radiation
Electromagnetic Phenomena
Isotopes
History

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Stereoselectivity of β irradiation of D,L-tryptophan in aqueous solution. / Darge, W.; Laczkó, I.; Thiemann, W.

In: Nature, Vol. 261, No. 5560, 1976, p. 522-524.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Darge, W. ; Laczkó, I. ; Thiemann, W. / Stereoselectivity of β irradiation of D,L-tryptophan in aqueous solution. In: Nature. 1976 ; Vol. 261, No. 5560. pp. 522-524.
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