COMMISSION ON NOMENCLATURE OF ORGANIC CHEMISTRY
Revised Section F: Natural products
and related compounds
(IUPAC Recommendations 1999)
Prepared for publication by P.M. Giles, Jr.
Wide Web version prepared by G. P. Moss
Abstract: The nomenclature of natural products
has suffered from much confusion, mostly for historical reasons.
The isolation of a new substance, in the early days of the science,
generally preceded its characterization by a lengthy period. Thus, these
compounds were often assigned trivial names that gave no indication
of the structure of the molecule and were often found afterwards to
be misleading. Even when the original names were later revised (for
example: glycerin to glycerol) the new names often expressed the structure
imperfectly and were thus unsuitable for the nomenclatural manipulation
that is required to name derivatives or stereoisomers. The result was
a proliferation of trivial names that taxed the memory of chemists and
obscured important structural relationships.
The resultant disorder in the literature led to the creation
of committees of specialists with the task of codifying the naming of
compounds in various connected areas of natural-product chemistry, such
as steroids, lipids, and carbohydrates. As far as their recommendations
have been followed, their efforts have been successful in eliminating
confusing or duplicate nomenclature.
It is the aim of the lUPAC Commission on Nomenclature
of Organic Chemistry to unite as far as possible all the specialist
reports into a single set of recommendations that can be applied in
most areas of natural-product chemistry. Accordingly, provisional recommendations
were prepared and published as Section F of the lUPAC Organic Nomenclature
Rules, first in 1976, and then in the 1979 edition of the Rules.
+ Errata, Pure
Appl. Chem. 76(6),
World Wide Web
version prepared by G. P. Moss