Classics in Total Synthesis III

Classics in Total Synthesis III

Author: ChemViews

According to Dirk Menche and Sebastian Essig, Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg, Germany, the book Classics in Total Synthesis III by K. C. Nicolaou and Jason Chen, will itself become a classic on the art of contemporary organic synthesis.

They write:
Nowadays, books that concentrate on the area of organic synthesis are numerous enough to fill whole inventories of libraries. But of that multitude, only a few books have been as outstanding in recent years as the series Classics in Total Synthesis, written by K. C. Nicolaou with various co-authors.

The concept of the preceding volumes has been closely retained. In 26 chapters, including an introductory chapter, syntheses of more than 40 natural products or natural product core structures are discussed in detail. The syntheses, together with historical excursions, have been taken from literature of the years 2003 to 2010.

Also particularly valuable for the reader are the short reviews on specific topics, which have the scope and style of review articles.

Novelties of this third volume compared to the previous ones are mainly concerned with the detailed contents. The depth of mechanistic discussions has been greatly increased. The introductions to the chapters often feature insights into the biosynthesis of the natural product concerned.

This book will certainly contribute its share to ensuring that these syntheses will be used as outstanding models for teaching and research purposes, even 20 or more years from now. One could also consider an even broader selection of target molecules and structures, which might be less close to the main author’s field of work and experience.


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