May 18, 2022

A new technique to delete single atoms can speed up molecule design

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, chemistry

Every time a new cancer drug is announced, it represents hundreds of researchers spending years behind the scenes working to design and test a new molecule. The drug has to be not only effective, but also as safe as possible and easy to manufacture—and these researchers have to choose among thousands of possible options for its chemical structure.

But building each possible molecular structure for testing is a laborious process, even if researchers simply want to change a single carbon atom.

A new technique published by University of Chicago chemists and the pharmaceutical company Merck & Co. in the journal Science offers a way to leapfrog that process, allowing scientists to quickly and easily produce new molecules of interest.

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