Gamma-radiolysis of chiral molecules: R(+)-limonene, S(-)-limonene and R(-)-a-phellandrene

F. Cataldo, Y. Keheyan, S. Baccaro

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Three isomeric chiral terpenes, R(+)-limonene, S(-)-limonene and R(-)-a-phellandrene were -radiolyzed in sealed vials at room temperature with a total radiation dose of 317 kGy. The radiolyzed samples were analyzed by FT-IR, electronic absorption spectroscopy, liquid chromatography using a diode-array detector (HPLC-DAD) and by polarimetry. Despite a relatively high radiation dose used, all the chiral molecules selected have shown a low radioracemization rate. This fact and the role played by the impurities in the selective radio-degradation of one of the two enantiomers has been discussed in the context of the origin of chirality in prebiotic molecules and the chirality enhancement in a prebiotic world. The results were also discussed in the frame of the radiosterilization technique of chiral drugs, perfumes and food components.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)423 - 428
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2004
Externally publishedYes


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering

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