MRR on the Up
Could chiral tagging be the springboard for molecular rotational resonance spectroscopy's rise to fame? We spoke to Justin Neill, Chief Technology Officer at BrightSpec – the company hoping to bring MRR into the spotlight.
Frank van Geel, Joanna Cummings |
What does MRR bring to the table?
What’s long been recognized about microwave spectroscopy is its capability to resolve different compounds – particularly isomers in a mixture – without having to separate components. MRR is unique among spectroscopy techniques; different isomers have different moments of inertia, but with MRR we can resolve them and actually do computational work to determine the pattern of each isomer in the spectra – allowing us to identify it unambiguously. In terms of specificity, there are also amazing advantages to the technique over other methods, especially in the spectroscopy realm – and sample preparation centers on volatilizing the sample.
What advantages does MRR have over chromatography?
MRR identifies and quantifies molecules on the basis of their unique 3D structures, through microwave and millimeter wave spectroscopy. Because of the high selectivity and resolution, pure reference standards of each component of interest are not needed – components can be identified directly in mixtures. This eases a major burden in chromatographic method development. MRR is extremely sensitive to small changes in structure, including diastereomers, regioisomers, and enantiomers, which are often difficult separations. Because of the fast measurement times and method development, MRR is particularly advantageous in reaction monitoring; for example to monitor the yield and specificity of small-molecule continuous flow syntheses.
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