Derivative (chemistry)

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In chemistry, a derivative is a compound that is derived from a similar compound by a chemical reaction.

In the past, derivative also meant a compound that can be imagined to arise from another compound, if one atom or group of atoms is replaced with another atom or group of atoms,[1] but modern chemical language now uses the term structural analog for this meaning, thus eliminating ambiguity.[citation needed] The term "structural analogue" is common in organic chemistry.

In biochemistry, the word is used for compounds that at least theoretically can be formed from the precursor compound.[2]

Chemical derivatives may be used to facilitate analysis. For example, melting point (MP) analysis can assist in identification of many organic compounds. A crystalline derivative may be prepared, such as a semicarbazone or 2,4-dinitrophenylhydrazone (derived from aldehydes or ketones), as a simple way of verifying the identity of the original compound, assuming that a table of derivative MP values is available.[3] Prior to the advent of spectroscopic analysis, such methods were widely used.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Definition of Derivative". Chemicool. 2007-09-18. Retrieved 2007-09-18. 
  2. ^ Oxford Dictionary of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-850673-2. 
  3. ^ Williamson, Kenneth L. (1999). Macroscale and Microscale Organic Experiments, 3rd ed. Boston: Houghton-Mifflin. pp. 426–7. ISBN 0-395-90220-7.