November 23rd, 2011


My Friend Flickr

Last night I signed up for Flickr, purely so I could comment on other people's photos. I've been adding everyone whose usernames or real names I recognise. Except I've now fallen foul of the "Slow down partner!" restriction on new accounts, which is there to prevent spam. Fair enough - but there's no indication of how long I need to wait before I can add more people to my contacts list! Does anyone know?

I am, of course, using the name baratron. If you actually use Flickr, feel free to add me. (I've seen quite a few people I recognise whose accounts seem to be dead, but I'm not sure whether they really are dead or if it's just that they don't upload photos there anymore due to terms of service issues). Possibly, having existing users add me might be what's required to undo the "Slow down" marking, I'm not sure.
rainbow chemistry geek

Continuing with the theme of "insufficiently geeky" today...

Today I am trying to work out whether (deep breath):
(4E,6Z,8S,9S,10E,12S,13R,14S,16R)-13-hydroxy-8,14,19-trimethoxy-4,10,12,16-tetramethyl-3,20,22-trioxo-2-azabicyclo[16.3.1]docosa-1(21),4,6,10,18-pentaen-9-yl carbamate
is the same thing as:
(4Z,6Z,8R,9R,10Z,12R,13R,14R,16S)-13-hydroxy-8,14,19-trimethoxy-4,10,12,16-tetramethyl-3,20,22-trioxo-2-azabicyclo[16.3.1]docosa-1(21),4,6,10,18-pentaen-9-yl carbamate.

It would be easy if all the stereochemistry was inverted, but it isn't - one double bond is the same and one side-chain is the same in both naming schemes.

Anyone who says that I'm a chemist so I should be able to work this out will be shot, since most people's brains freeze up when confronted with a molecule name on three lines. It takes some sort of special IUPAC knowledge to be able to cope with ridiculously complex molecules. Everyone else calls this thing geldanamycin.

The real question is whether I can invert the stereochemistry at every single one of those stereocentres, or if the groups always have to stay in the same configuration relative to each other. I have no clue.

I predict that my evening is going to involve making this monster out of my molecular modelling kit, since I simply can't deal with complicated shape stuff on paper.