Preparative Chromatography - The Preparative Separation of the Enantiomers of Chlorokynurenine > Page 67

The separation of the enantiomers of chiral drugs has become exceedingly important over recent years. This new enthusiasm was fostered by the discovery that the respective physiological activity of the isomers of a drug could differ radically and this was found to be true for many physiologically active compounds and, in particular, physiologically active biotechnology products. However, the major stimulation arose from the unfortunate birth defects initiated by one of the enantiomers of Thalidomide. This drug was manufactured and sold as a racemic mixture of N-phthalylglutamic acid imide. However, the desired physiologically activity was found to reside solely in the R-(+)-isomer and it was discovered, too late, that the correspondingS-(-)-enantiomerwasteratogenicandcaused serious fetal malformations.

 

Courtesy of ASTEC Inc.

 

Figure 36. A Commercially Available Preparative Column for the Separation of Enantiomeric Pairs.