The chemistry of organic nitrogen (organonitrogen) compounds
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Occurrence of organo-nitrogen compounds in nature & pharmaceutical products
Sub-index for this page
Pharmaceutical products -
a few selected examples
Natural products - a few
8.3.1 Pharmaceutical products
- a few selected examples
The industrial synthesis of the analgesic paracetamol in
Paracetamol is an N-substituted
An overlap of natural hormones and
A series of molecules, both natural and
synthetic, all having a benzene ring and other functional groups are pointed out.
Apart from D, they all have one chiral carbon atom and
exhibit R/S isomerism - mirror image optical isomers.
A The amphetamine
molecule has a primary amine group.
Amphetamine is a synthetic amine
compound that acts as a central nervous system stimulant to combat
drowsiness, chronic fatigue syndrome and narcolepsy.
phenylephrine molecule has one phenol group, secondary alcohol group and
a secondary amine group.
Phenylephrine is a synthetic amine
that is used in medicines as a decongestant to treat a stuffy nose and
sinus congestion caused by the common cold, hay fever and other allergic
adrenaline molecule has two phenol groups, secondary alcohol group and a
secondary amine group.
Adrenaline is naturally produced in
the adrenal glands and functions as a hormone, but it is also used as a
medication. It is involved in regulating visceral functions like
breathing and is involved in the 'fight or flight' response when a
animal feels endangered and stressed for some reason e.g. it increases
dopamine molecule has two phenol groups and a primary amine group.
Dopamine is a type of neurotransmitter. Your body
makes it, and your nervous system uses it to send messages between nerve
cells. That's why it's sometimes called a chemical messenger. Dopamine
plays a role in how we feel pleasure
noradrenaline molecule has two phenol groups, secondary alcohol group
and a primary amine group.
A chemical released predominantly from the ends of
sympathetic nerve fibres and acts to increase the force of skeletal
muscle contraction and the rate and force of contraction of the heart.
tyrosine molecule has one phenol group, primary amine group and a
carboxylic acid group.
L-tyrosine is one of the twenty amino
acids that we need to build protein molecules.
It is also an essential component for the
production of several important brain chemicals called
neurotransmitters, including epinephrine, norepinephrine, and dopamine.
Neurotransmitters help nerve cells communicate and influence mood.
Tyrosine also helps produce melanin, the pigment responsible for hair
and skin color - a very busy molecule!
products - a few selected examples
Other than the obvious amino acids,
polypeptides, proteins including enzymes!
Alkaloids are a class of basic,
naturally occurring organic compounds that contain at least one nitrogen
atom (often a secondary or tertiary amine group).
possess psychotropic, pain-killing, stimulant and toxic properties.
Examples of 'opiates', opium
alkaloid molecules like morphine and heroin from plants, long known for
their painkilling properties..
Codeine is a safer painkilling analogue of them, but don't overdo it,
you can become addicted to codeine tablets!
Strychnine is a deadly alkaloid with rather
different effects than those mentioned above!
The stimulants caffeine and
nicotine are for many of us our daily does of alkaloid molecules!
Fish oil contain high
concentrations of amines, but not simple amines, unlike those very smelly
decay products from rotting fish!
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