The syntheses, transformations and some of the biological features of 2- aminocyclopentanecarboxylic acid are reviewed. The (1S,2R) enantiomer (cispentacin) was recently isolated from different natural sources. cis-2-Aminocyclopentacecarboxylic acid is also a component of the antibiotic amipurimycin. The paper discusses the syntheses of the racemic compounds, resolutions of the racemates and enetioselective syntheses of the title compounds. The transformations to heterocyclic compounds, applications in peptide syntheses, and biological effects are reviewed.