University Chemistry ›› 2019, Vol. 34 ›› Issue (9): 1-12.doi: 10.3866/PKU.DXHX201904021

• Chemistry Today • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Great Concern for Chiral Pharmaceuticals from the Thalidomide Tragedy

Weiguang ZHANG1,*(),Shilin ZHANG2,Dong GUO2,Lei ZHAO2,Lajia YU2,Hui ZHANG2,*(),Yujian HE3   

  1. 1 School of Chemistry and Environment, South China Normal University, Guangzhou 510006, P. R. China
    2 College of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Xiamen University, Xiamen 361005, Fujian Province, P. R. China
    3 School of Chemical Science, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100039, P. R. China
  • Received:2019-04-11 Accepted:2019-04-12 Published:2019-05-17
  • Contact: Weiguang ZHANG,Hui ZHANG;
  • Supported by:


Since the Thalidomide tragedy in the 1960s, the issue of chirality has become increasingly important in the fields of novel drug development and pharmaceutical research. Enantiomers may exhibit different pharmacologic, pharmacokinetic, metabolic, and toxicological activity in living organisms. Recently, chiral High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) technology combined with chiroptical spectroscopy has been widely used in separation and analysis of chiral compounds, and will play a critical role in the detection and quality control of chiral pharmaceuticals.

Key words: Chiral drug, Thalidomide tragedy, Chiral health-care product, Enantiomer, Enantioselectivity