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In
chemistry Chemistry is the study of the properties and behavior of . It is a that covers the that make up matter to the composed of s, s and s: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they undergo during a with other . ...

chemistry
, organic compounds are generally any
chemical compound A chemical compound is a chemical substance A chemical substance is a form of matter In classical physics and general chemistry, matter is any substance that has mass and takes up space by having volume. All everyday objects that can be ...
s that contain
carbon Carbon (from la, carbo "coal") is a with the C and 6. It is lic and —making four s available to form s. It belongs to group 14 of the periodic table. Carbon makes up only about 0.025 percent of Earth's crust. Three occur naturally, ...

carbon
-
hydrogen Hydrogen is the chemical element Image:Simple Periodic Table Chart-blocks.svg, 400px, Periodic table, The periodic table of the chemical elements In chemistry, an element is a pure substance consisting only of atoms that all have the same ...

hydrogen
bonds. Due to carbon's ability to catenate (form chains with other carbon
atom An atom is the smallest unit of ordinary matter In classical physics and general chemistry, matter is any substance that has mass and takes up space by having volume. All everyday objects that can be touched are ultimately composed of atom ...

atom
s), millions of organic compounds are known. The study of the properties, reactions, and syntheses of organic compounds comprise the discipline known as
organic chemistry Organic chemistry is a branch of that studies the structure, properties and reactions of s, which contain in .Clayden, J.; Greeves, N. and Warren, S. (2012) ''Organic Chemistry''. Oxford University Press. pp. 1–15. . Study of structure determ ...
. For historical reasons, a few classes of carbon-containing compounds (e.g.,
carbonate In chemistry, a carbonate is a salt Salt is a mineral composed primarily of sodium chloride (NaCl), a chemical compound belonging to the larger class of Salt (chemistry), salts; salt in its natural form as a crystallinity, crystalline min ...

carbonate
anion salts and
cyanide salts
cyanide salts
), along with a few other exceptions (e.g.,
carbon dioxide Carbon dioxide (chemical formula A chemical formula is a way of presenting information about the chemical proportions of atom An atom is the smallest unit of ordinary matter In classical physics and general chemistry, matter is ...

carbon dioxide
), are not classified as organic compounds and are considered inorganic. Other than those just named, little consensus exists among
chemist A chemist (from Greek ''chēm(ía)'' alchemy; replacing ''chymist'' from Medieval Latin Medieval Latin was the form of Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European l ...

chemist
s on precisely which carbon-containing compounds are excluded, making any rigorous definition of an organic compound elusive. Spencer L. Seager, Michael R. Slabaugh. ''Chemistry for Today: general, organic, and
biochemistry Biochemistry or biological chemistry, is the study of es within and relating to living s. A sub-discipline of both and , biochemistry may be divided into three fields: , and . Over the last decades of the 20th century, biochemistry has beco ...

biochemistry
''. Thomson Brooks/Cole, 2004, p. 342.
Although organic compounds make up only a small percentage of
Earth's crust 350px, Plates in the crust of Earth Earth's crust is a thin shell on the outside of Earth, accounting for less than 1% of Earth's volume. It is the top component of the lithosphere, a division of Earth's layers that includes the Crust (geology), ...
, they are of central importance because all known life is based on organic compounds. Living things incorporate inorganic carbon compounds into organic compounds through a network of processes (
the carbon cycle
the carbon cycle
) that begins with the conversion of carbon dioxide and a hydrogen source like
water Water (chemical formula H2O) is an , transparent, tasteless, odorless, and , which is the main constituent of 's and the s of all known living organisms (in which it acts as a ). It is vital for all known forms of , even though it provide ...

water
into simple sugars and other organic
molecule A scanning tunneling microscopy image of pentacene molecules, which consist of linear chains of five carbon rings. A molecule is an electrically Electricity is the set of physical phenomena associated with the presence and motion I ...

molecule
s by autotrophic organisms using light (
photosynthesis Photosynthesis is a process used by plants and other organisms to into that, through , can later be released to fuel the organism's activities. Some of this chemical energy is stored in molecules, such as s and es, which are synthesized fro ...

photosynthesis
) or other sources of energy. Most synthetically-produced organic compounds are ultimately derived from
petrochemical Petrochemicals (sometimes abbreviated as petchems) are the chemical products obtained from petroleum Petroleum (), also known as crude oil and oil, is a #Latent heat of vaporization, naturally occurring, yellowish-black liquid found in geolo ...
s consisting mainly of
hydrocarbon In , a hydrocarbon is an consisting entirely of and . Hydrocarbons are examples of s. Hydrocarbons are generally colourless and hydrophobic with only weak odours. Because of their diverse molecular structures, it is difficult to generalize furth ...
s, which are themselves formed from the high pressure and temperature degradation of organic matter underground over geological timescales. This ultimate derivation notwithstanding, organic compounds are no longer defined as compounds originating in living things, as they were historically. In chemical nomenclature, an
organyl group In organic and organometallic chemistry Organometallic chemistry is the study of organometallic compounds, chemical compounds containing at least one chemical bond between a carbon atom of an organic molecule and a metal, including alkaline, alk ...
, frequently represented by the letter R, refers to any monovalent
substituent A substituent is one or a group of atom An atom is the smallest unit of ordinary matter In classical physics and general chemistry, matter is any substance that has mass and takes up space by having volume. All everyday objects that ca ...
whose open valence is on a carbon atom.


Definitions of organic vs inorganic

For historical reasons discussed below, a few types of carbon-containing compounds, such as
carbide . In chemistry Chemistry is the science, scientific study of the properties and behavior of matter. It is a natural science that covers the Chemical element, elements that make up matter to the chemical compound, compounds composed of atoms ...

carbide
s,
carbonate In chemistry, a carbonate is a salt Salt is a mineral composed primarily of sodium chloride (NaCl), a chemical compound belonging to the larger class of Salt (chemistry), salts; salt in its natural form as a crystallinity, crystalline min ...

carbonate
s (excluding
carbonate ester A carbonate ester (organic carbonate or organocarbonate) is an ester An ester is a chemical compound derived from an acid (organic or inorganic) in which at least one –OH hydroxyl group is replaced by an –O– alkyl (alkoxy) group, as in the s ...

carbonate ester
s), simple oxides of carbon (for example,
CO
CO
and
CO2
CO<sub>2</sub>
), and
cyanide A cyanide is a chemical compound A chemical compound is a chemical substance composed of many identical molecules (or molecular entity, molecular entities) composed of atoms from more than one chemical element, element held together by chemi ...

cyanide
s are considered
inorganic In chemistry Chemistry is the scientific discipline involved with Chemical element, elements and chemical compound, compounds composed of atoms, molecules and ions: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they under ...
. Different forms (
allotropes Allotropy or allotropism () is the property of some chemical element Image:Simple Periodic Table Chart-blocks.svg, 400px, Periodic table, The periodic table of the chemical elements In chemistry, an element is a pure substance consisting o ...
) of pure carbon, such as
diamond Diamond is a solid form of the element carbon with its atoms arranged in a crystal structure In crystallography Crystallography is the experimental science of determining the arrangement of atoms in crystalline solids (see crystal structur ...

diamond
,
graphite Graphite (), archaically referred to as plumbago, is a crystalline form of the element carbon Carbon (from la, carbo "coal") is a chemical element Image:Simple Periodic Table Chart-blocks.svg, 400px, Periodic table, The periodic table ...

graphite
,
fullerenes A fullerene is an allotrope of carbon whose molecule consists of carbon Carbon (from la, carbo "coal") is a chemical element Image:Simple Periodic Table Chart-blocks.svg, 400px, Periodic table, The periodic table of the chemical el ...

fullerenes
, and
carbon nanotubes image of a single-walled carbon nanotube. Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are tubes made of carbon with diameters typically measured in nanometers. Carbon nanotubes often refer to single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) with diameters in the range of ...

carbon nanotubes
are also excluded because they are simple substances composed of only a single element and therefore are not generally considered to be chemical ''compounds''.


History


Vitalism

Vitalism Vitalism is the belief that "living organisms are fundamentally different from non-living entities because they contain some non-physical element or are governed by different principles than are inanimate things". Where vitalism explicitly invoke ...
was a widespread conception that substances found in organic nature are formed from the chemical elements by the action of a "vital force" or "life-force" (''vis vitalis'') that only living organisms possess. Vitalism taught that these "organic" compounds were fundamentally different from the "inorganic" compounds that could be obtained from the elements by chemical manipulations. Vitalism survived for a while even after the formulation of modern ideas about the
atomic theory Atomic theory is the scientific theory A scientific theory is an explanation of an aspect of the natural world and universe that has been repeatedly tested and verified in accordance with the scientific method The scientific method is ...
and
chemical element In chemistry, an element is a pure Chemical substance, substance consisting only of atoms that all have the same numbers of protons in their atomic nucleus, nuclei. Unlike chemical compounds, chemical elements cannot be broken down into simp ...
s. It first came under question in 1824, when
Friedrich Wöhler Friedrich Wöhler () FRS(For) HFRSE Fellowship of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (FRSE) is an award granted to individuals that the Royal Society of Edinburgh, Scotland's national academy of science and Literature, letters, judged to be "em ...

Friedrich Wöhler
synthesized
oxalic acid Oxalic acid is an organic acid An organic acid is an with ic properties. The most common organic acids are the s, whose acidity is associated with their  –COOH. s, containing the group –SO2OH, are relatively stronger acids. Alcoh ...

oxalic acid
, a compound known to occur only in living organisms, from
cyanogen Cyanogen is the chemical compound A chemical compound is a chemical substance composed of many identical molecules (or molecular entity, molecular entities) composed of atoms from more than one chemical element, element held together by chemica ...

cyanogen
. A further experiment was Wöhler's 1828 synthesis of
urea Urea, also known as carbamide, is an organic compound In , organic compounds are generally any s that contain - . Due to carbon's ability to (form chains with other carbon s), millions of organic compounds are known. The study of the prop ...

urea
from the inorganic
salts In chemistry Chemistry is the study of the properties and behavior of . It is a that covers the that make up matter to the composed of s, s and s: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they undergo during ...
potassium cyanate and
ammonium sulfate Ammonium sulfate (American English and international scientific usage; ammonium sulphate in British English British English (BrE) is the standard dialect of the English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic lan ...

ammonium sulfate
. Urea had long been considered an "organic" compound, as it was known to occur only in the urine of living organisms. Wöhler's experiments were followed by many others, in which increasingly complex "organic" substances were produced from "inorganic" ones without the involvement of any living organism.


Modern classification and ambiguities

Although vitalism has been discredited, scientific nomenclature retains the distinction between ''organic'' and ''inorganic'' compounds. The modern meaning of ''organic compound'' is any compound that contains a significant amount of carbon—even though many of the organic compounds known today have no connection to any substance found in living organisms. The term ''carbogenic'' has been proposed by E. J. Corey as a modern alternative to ''organic'', but this neologism remains relatively obscure. The organic compound
L-isoleucine
<small>L</small>-isoleucine
molecule presents some features typical of organic compounds:
carbon–carbon bond A carbon–carbon bond is a covalent bond between two carbon atoms. The most common form is the single bond: a bond composed of two electrons, one from each of the two atoms. The carbon–carbon single bond is a sigma bond and is formed betw ...
s,
carbon–hydrogen bond The carbon-hydrogen bond (C–H bond) is a bond Bond or bonds may refer to: Common meanings * Bond (finance) In finance Finance is the study of financial institutions, financial markets and how they operate within the financial system. It ...
s, as well as covalent bonds from carbon to oxygen and to nitrogen. As described in detail below, any definition of organic compound that uses simple, broadly-applicable criteria turns out to be unsatisfactory, to varying degrees. The modern, commonly accepted definition of organic compound essentially amounts to any carbon containing compound, excluding several classes of substances traditionally considered as 'inorganic'. However, the list of substances so excluded varies from author to author. Still, it is generally agreed upon that there are (at least) a few carbon-containing compounds that should not be considered organic. For instance, almost all authorities would require the exclusion of
alloys An alloy is an admixture of metal A metal (from Ancient Greek, Greek μέταλλον ''métallon'', "mine, quarry, metal") is a material that, when freshly prepared, polished, or fractured, shows a lustrous appearance, and conducts Elec ...
that contain carbon, including
steel Steel is an alloy An alloy is an admixture of metal A metal (from Ancient Greek, Greek μέταλλον ''métallon'', "mine, quarry, metal") is a material that, when freshly prepared, polished, or fractured, shows a lustrous appe ...

steel
(which contains
cementite Cementite (or iron carbide) is a Chemical compound, compound of iron and carbon, more precisely an intermediate transition metal carbide with the formula Fe3C. By weight, it is 6.67% carbon and 93.3% iron. It has an orthorhombic crystal structure. I ...

cementite
, Fe3C), as well as other metal and semimetal carbides (including "ionic" carbides, e.g, Al4C3 and
CaC2
CaC<sub>2</sub>
and "covalent" carbides, e.g. B4C and
SiC The Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman Republic, ...

SiC
, and graphite intercalation compounds, e.g. KC8). Other compounds and materials that are considered 'inorganic' by most authorities include: metal
carbonates In chemistry, a carbonate is a salt Salt is a mineral composed primarily of sodium chloride (NaCl), a chemical compound belonging to the larger class of Salt (chemistry), salts; salt in its natural form as a crystallinity, crystalline min ...
, simple
oxides An oxide () is a chemical compound A chemical compound is a chemical substance A chemical substance is a form of matter In classical physics and general chemistry, matter is any substance that has mass and takes up space by having vol ...
(CO, CO2, and arguably,
C3O2
C<sub>3</sub>O<sub>2</sub>
), the
allotropes Allotropy or allotropism () is the property of some chemical element Image:Simple Periodic Table Chart-blocks.svg, 400px, Periodic table, The periodic table of the chemical elements In chemistry, an element is a pure substance consisting o ...
of carbon,
cyanide A cyanide is a chemical compound A chemical compound is a chemical substance composed of many identical molecules (or molecular entity, molecular entities) composed of atoms from more than one chemical element, element held together by che ...
derivatives not containing an organic residue (e.g., KCN, (CN)2, BrCN, CNO, etc.), and heavier analogs thereof (e.g., CP '
cyaphide Cyaphide, P≡C−, is the phosphorus analogue of cyanide A cyanide is a chemical compound that contains the group C≡N. This group, known as the cyano group, consists of a carbon atom triple-bonded to a nitrogen atom. In Inorganic compound, i ...
anion', CSe2, COS; although CS2 '
carbon disulfide Carbon disulfide, also spelled as carbon disulphide, is a colorless volatility (chemistry), volatile liquid with the chemical formula, formula CS2. The Chemical compound, compound is used frequently as a building block in organic chemistry as well ...
' is often classed as an ''organic'' solvent). Halides of carbon without hydrogen (e.g., CF4 and CClF3),
phosgene Phosgene is the organic chemical compound with the formula In science Science (from the Latin word ''scientia'', meaning "knowledge") is a systematic enterprise that Scientific method, builds and Taxonomy (general), organizes knowledge ...

phosgene
(COCl2),
carborane Carboranes are electron-delocalized (non-classically bonded) clusters composed of , and atoms that may also contain other metallic and nonmetallic elements in the cluster framework.Grimes, R. N., ''Carboranes 3rd Ed.'', Elsevier, Amsterdam and N ...
s,
metal carbonyls Metal carbonyls are coordination complex A coordination complex consists of a central atom An atom is the smallest unit of ordinary matter In classical physics and general chemistry, matter is any substance that has mass and takes up ...
(e.g., nickel carbonyl),
mellitic anhydride Mellitic anhydride, the anhydride of mellitic acid, is an organic compound with the formula C12O9. Containing no other elements (e.g., hydrogen) besides carbon and oxygen, mellitic anhydride is an oxide of carbon (oxocarbon), and, along with car ...
(C12O9), and other exotic
oxocarbonAn oxocarbon or oxide of carbon is a chemical compound A chemical compound is a chemical substance composed of many identical molecules (or molecular entity, molecular entities) composed of atoms from more than one chemical element, element held ...
s are also considered inorganic by some authorities.
Nickel carbonyl Nickel carbonyl (IUPAC The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC ) is an international federation of National Adhering OrganizationsNational Adhering Organizations in chemistry are the organizations that work as the authori ...
(Ni(CO)4) and other metal carbonyls are often volatile liquids, like many organic compounds, yet they contain only carbon bonded to a transition metal and to oxygen, and are often prepared directly from metal and
carbon monoxide Carbon monoxide (chemical formula CO) is a colorless, odorless, tasteless, flammable gas that is slightly less dense than air. Carbon monoxide consists of one carbon atom and one oxygen atom. It is the simplest molecule of the oxocarbon family. In ...

carbon monoxide
. Nickel carbonyl is typically classified as an ''
organometallic compound Organometallic chemistry is the study of organometallic compounds, chemical compound A chemical compound is a chemical substance A chemical substance is a form of matter In classical physics and general chemistry, matter is any subst ...

organometallic compound
'' as it satisfies the broad definition that
organometallic chemistry Organometallic chemistry is the study of organometallic compounds, chemical compound A chemical compound is a chemical substance composed of many identical molecules (or molecular entity, molecular entities) composed of atoms from more than ...
covers all compounds that contain at least one carbon to metal covalent bond; it is debatable whether organometallic compounds form a subset of organic compounds, however. For example, the evidence of covalent Fe-C bonding in
cementite Cementite (or iron carbide) is a Chemical compound, compound of iron and carbon, more precisely an intermediate transition metal carbide with the formula Fe3C. By weight, it is 6.67% carbon and 93.3% iron. It has an orthorhombic crystal structure. I ...

cementite
, a major component of steel, places it within this broad definition of organometallic, yet steel and other carbon-containing alloys are seldom regarded as organic compounds. Thus, it is unclear whether the definition of organometallic should be narrowed, whether these considerations imply that organometallic compounds are not necessarily organic, or both. Metal complexes with organic ligands but no carbon-metal bonds (e.g., Cu(OAc)2) are not considered organometallic; instead they are classed as ''metalorganic''. Likewise, it is also unclear whether metalorganic compounds should automatically be considered organic. The relatively narrow definition of organic compounds as those containing C-H bonds excludes compounds that are (historically and practically) considered organic. Neither urea nor oxalic acid is organic by this definition, yet they were two key compounds in the vitalism debate. The IUPAC Blue Book on organic nomenclature specifically mentions urea and oxalic acid. Other compounds lacking C-H bonds but traditionally considered organic include
benzenehexol Benzenehexol, also called hexahydroxybenzene, is an organic compound , CH4; is among the simplest organic compounds. In chemistry, organic compounds are generally any chemical compounds that contain carbon-hydrogen chemical bond, bonds. Due to c ...

benzenehexol
,
mesoxalic acid Mesoxalic acid, also called oxomalonic acid or ketomalonic acid, is an organic compound with formula C3H2O5 or HO−(C=O)3−OH. Mesoxalic acid is both a dicarboxylic acid and a ketonic acid. It readily loses two protons to yield the valence (che ...

mesoxalic acid
, and
carbon tetrachloride Carbon tetrachloride, also known by many other names (such as tetrachloromethane, also recognised by the IUPAC, carbon tet in the cleaning industry Cleaning is the process of removing unwanted substances, such as dirt, infectious agents, and ...

carbon tetrachloride
.
Mellitic acid Mellitic acid, also called graphitic acid or benzenehexacarboxylic acid, is an acid An acid is a or capable of donating a (hydrogen ion H+) (a ), or, alternatively, capable of forming a with an (a ). The first category of acids are t ...

Mellitic acid
, which contains no C-H bonds, is considered a possible organic substance in
Martian Image:Woking tripod.JPG, 200px, Sculpture of a Martian (The War of the Worlds), Wellsian Martian Tripod in the town of Woking, England A Martian is an inhabitant of the planet Mars or a Colonization of Mars, human colonist on Mars. Although the ...

Martian
soil. Terrestrially, it, and its anhydride, mellitic anhydride, are associated with the mineral
mellite Mellite, also called honeystone, is an unusual mineral In geology and mineralogy, a mineral or mineral species is, broadly speaking, a solid chemical compound with a fairly well-defined chemical composition and a specific crystal structure t ...
(Al2C6(COO)6·16H2O). A slightly broader definition of organic compound includes all compounds bearing C-H or C-C bonds. This would still exclude urea. Moreover, this definition still leads to somewhat arbitrary divisions in sets of carbon-halogen compounds. For example, CF4 and
CCl4
CCl<sub>4</sub>
would be considered by this rule to be "inorganic", whereas
CF3H
CF<sub>3</sub>H
,
CHCl3
CHCl<sub>3</sub>
, and C2Cl6 would be organic, though these compounds share many physical and chemical properties.


Classification

Organic compounds may be classified in a variety of ways. One major distinction is between natural and synthetic compounds. Organic compounds can also be classified or subdivided by the presence of
heteroatom In chemistry Chemistry is the scientific discipline involved with Chemical element, elements and chemical compound, compounds composed of atoms, molecules and ions: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they under ...

heteroatom
s, e.g.,
organometallic compound Organometallic chemistry is the study of organometallic compounds, chemical compound A chemical compound is a chemical substance A chemical substance is a form of matter In classical physics and general chemistry, matter is any subst ...

organometallic compound
s, which feature bonds between carbon and a
metal A metal (from Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is appro ...

metal
, and
organophosphorus compound Organophosphorus compounds are organic compound In , organic compounds are generally any s that contain - . Due to carbon's ability to (form chains with other carbon s), millions of organic compounds are known. The study of the properties, r ...
s, which feature bonds between carbon and a
phosphorus Phosphorus is a chemical element In chemistry, an element is a pure Chemical substance, substance consisting only of atoms that all have the same numbers of protons in their atomic nucleus, nuclei. Unlike chemical compounds, chemical el ...

phosphorus
. Another distinction, based on the size of organic compounds, distinguishes between
small moleculeWithin the fields of molecular biology Molecular biology is the branch of biology that seeks to understand the molecule, molecular basis of biological activity in and between Cell (biology), cells, including biomolecule, molecular synthesis, modi ...
s and
polymer A polymer (; Greek ''poly- Poly, from the Greek :wikt:πολύς, πολύς meaning "many" or "much", may refer to: Businesses * China Poly Group Corporation, a Chinese business group, and its subsidiaries: ** Poly Property, a Hong Kong inc ...

polymer
s.


Natural compounds

Natural compound A natural product is a chemical compound or chemical substance, substance produced by a living organism—that is, found in nature. In the broadest sense, natural products include any substance produced by life. Natural products can also be prep ...
s refer to those that are produced by plants or animals. Many of these are still extracted from natural sources because they would be more expensive to produce artificially. Examples include most
sugar Sugar is the generic name for sweet-tasting, soluble carbohydrate is a disaccharide A disaccharide (also called a double sugar or ''biose'') is the sugar formed when two monosaccharides are joined by glycosidic linkage. Like monosacc ...

sugar
s, some
alkaloid Alkaloids are a class of basic BASIC (Beginners' All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code) is a family of general-purpose, high-level programming language In computer science Computer science deals with the theoretical foundations of ...
s and
terpenoid The terpenoids, also known as isoprenoids, are a large and diverse class of naturally occurring organic compound, organic chemicals derived from the 5-carbon compound isoprene, and the isoprene polymers called terpenes. While sometimes used interch ...
s, certain nutrients such as
vitamin B12
vitamin B<sub>12</sub>
, and, in general, those natural products with large or stereoisometrically complicated molecules present in reasonable concentrations in living organisms. Further compounds of prime importance in
biochemistry Biochemistry or biological chemistry, is the study of es within and relating to living s. A sub-discipline of both and , biochemistry may be divided into three fields: , and . Over the last decades of the 20th century, biochemistry has beco ...

biochemistry
are
antigen In immunology Immunology is a branch of biology that covers the study of immune systems in all organisms. Immunology charts, measures, and contextualizes the Physiology, physiological functioning of the immune system in states of both health ...
s,
carbohydrate A carbohydrate () is a biomolecule , showing alpha helices, represented by ribbons. This poten was the first to have its suckture solved by X-ray crystallography by Max Perutz and Sir John Cowdery Kendrew in 1958, for which they received a ...
s,
enzyme Enzymes () are proteins that act as biological catalysts (biocatalysts). Catalysts accelerate chemical reactions. The molecules upon which enzymes may act are called substrate (chemistry), substrates, and the enzyme converts the substrates in ...

enzyme
s,
hormone A hormone (from the Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is appr ...

hormone
s,
lipid In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular biology, molecular interactions, Physiology, physiological mechanis ...
s and
fatty acid In chemistry Chemistry is the study of the properties and behavior of . It is a that covers the that make up matter to the composed of s, s and s: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they undergo during ...
s,
neurotransmitter A neurotransmitter is a signaling molecule In biology, cell signaling (cell signalling in British English), or cell-cell communication, governs the basic activities of cells and coordinates multiple-cell actions. A signal is an entity that ...
s,
nucleic acid Nucleic acids are biopolymer Biopolymers are natural polymer A polymer (; Greek ''wikt:poly-, poly-'', "many" + ''wikt:-mer, -mer'', "part") is a Chemical substance, substance or material consisting of very large molecules, or macromolecule ...

nucleic acid
s,
protein Proteins are large biomolecule , showing alpha helices, represented by ribbons. This poten was the first to have its suckture solved by X-ray crystallography by Max Perutz and Sir John Cowdery Kendrew in 1958, for which they received a No ...

protein
s,
peptide Peptides (from Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally referred to by speakers simply as Greek (, ), refers collectively to the dialects of the Greek language spoken ...
s and
amino acid Amino acids are organic compound In , organic compounds are generally any s that contain - . Due to carbon's ability to (form chains with other carbon s), millions of organic compounds are known. The study of the properties, reactions, a ...

amino acid
s,
lectin Lectins are carbohydrate-binding proteins that are highly specific for sugar Moiety (chemistry), groups that are part of other molecules, so cause agglutination (biology), agglutination of particular cells or precipitation of Glycoconjugate, gly ...
s,
vitamin A vitamin is an organic molecule , CH4; is among the simplest organic compounds. In chemistry, organic compounds are generally any chemical compounds that contain carbon-hydrogen chemical bond, bonds. Due to carbon's ability to Catenation, ...
s, and fats and oils.


Synthetic compounds

Compounds that are prepared by reaction of other compounds are known as "synthetic". They may be either compounds that already are found in plants or animals or those that do not occur naturally. Most
polymer A polymer (; Greek ''poly- Poly, from the Greek :wikt:πολύς, πολύς meaning "many" or "much", may refer to: Businesses * China Poly Group Corporation, a Chinese business group, and its subsidiaries: ** Poly Property, a Hong Kong inc ...

polymer
s (a category that includes all
plastic Plastics are a wide range of syntheticA synthetic is an artificial material produced by organic chemistry, organic chemical synthesis. Synthetic may also refer to: In the sense of both "combination" and "artificial" * Synthetic chemical or s ...

plastic
s and
rubber Rubber, also called India rubber, latex, Amazonian rubber, ''caucho'', or ''caoutchouc'', as initially produced, consists of polymer A polymer (; Greek ''poly- Poly, from the Greek :wikt:πολύς, πολύς meaning "many" or "much" ...

rubber
s) are organic synthetic or semi-synthetic compounds.


Biotechnology

Many organic compounds—two examples are
ethanol Ethanol (also called ethyl alcohol, grain alcohol, drinking alcohol, or simply alcohol) is an organic Organic may refer to: * Organic, of or relating to an organism, a living entity * Organic, of or relating to an anatomical organ (anatomy), ...

ethanol
and
insulin Insulin (, from Latin ''insula'', 'island') is a peptide hormone produced by beta cells of the pancreatic islets; it is considered to be the main Anabolism, anabolic hormone of the body. It regulates the metabolism of carbohydrates, fats and p ...

insulin
—are manufactured industrially using organisms such as bacteria and yeast. Typically, the
DNA Deoxyribonucleic acid (; DNA) is a molecule File:Pentacene on Ni(111) STM.jpg, A scanning tunneling microscopy image of pentacene molecules, which consist of linear chains of five carbon rings. A molecule is an electrically neutral gro ...

DNA
of an organism is altered to express compounds not ordinarily produced by the organism. Many such
biotechnology Biotechnology is a broad area of biology, involving the use of living systems and organisms to develop or make products. Depending on the tools and applications, it often overlaps with related scientific fields. In the late 20th and early 21st c ...

biotechnology
-engineered compounds did not previously exist in nature.


Databases

* The '' CAS'' database is the most comprehensive repository for data on organic compounds. The search tool ''
SciFinder Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) is a division of the American Chemical Society. It is a source of chemical information. CAS is located in Columbus, Ohio, United States. Print periodicals ''Chemical Abstracts'' is a periodical index that provides ...
'' is offered. * The ''
Beilstein database The Beilstein database is the largest Chemical database, database in the field of organic chemistry, in which compounds are uniquely identified by their Beilstein Registry Number. The database covers the scientific literature from 1771 to the prese ...
'' contains information on 9.8 million substances, covers the scientific literature from 1771 to the present, and is today accessible via
Reaxys Reaxys is a web-based tool for the information retrieval, retrieval of chemistry information and data from published literature, including journals and patents. The information includes chemical compounds, chemical reactions, chemical properties, re ...
. Structures and a large diversity of physical and chemical properties is available for each substance, with reference to original literature. * ''PubChem'' contains 18.4 million entries on compounds and especially covers the field of medicinal chemistry. A great number of more specialized databases exist for diverse branches of organic chemistry.


Structure determination

The main tools are Proton NMR, proton and Carbon-13 NMR, carbon-13 NMR spectroscopy, Infrared spectroscopy, IR Spectroscopy, Mass spectrometry, Ultraviolet–visible spectroscopy, UV/Vis Spectroscopy and X-ray crystallography.Ernö Pretsch, Philippe Bühlmann, Martin Badertscher (2009), ''Structure Determination of Organic Compounds'' (Fourth, Revised and Enlarged Edition). Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg


See also

* *List of compounds, List of chemical compounds *List of organic compounds *


References


External links


Organic Compounds Database
{{DEFAULTSORT:Organic Compound Organic compounds, Organic chemistry