If you are struggling with your Molecule of the Week topics…
Updated F 09.03.10 – As a reminder, you need to find three examples from the chemical literature (full papers, 2009 to present) that minimally include a molecular metal-ligand complex and a crystal structure. Send me links to the papers, or, better yet, share a Google Doc with me so I can comment on the examples you provide. That’s it! The subject/area/topic is completely up to you.
As you search for relevant examples / topics for your MotW assignment, it is important to recognize that there is not a ‘correct’ way to search. Ultimately, the correct method is the one that leads to an answer or solution. Notice I didn’t say the answer, rather an answer, as the question will likely evolve during the search process (and it is a process). The more paths / methods you can employ for gathering information and ideas the better, and like most everything worth doing, deliberate practice is required.
If you are having difficulties finding appropriate examples, try using Google Scholar (http://scholar.google.com) to investigate a topic you have some interest in learning more about. I provide a couple examples below (all Scholar searches excluded patents were limited from 2009 to the present).
- Perhaps you have an interest in metal containing enzymes so you search Scholar using “metalloenzymes” and find a review paper on structure–function relationships in metalloenzymes. While the paper provides background, it doesn’t specifically include crystal structures. You do notice an interesting figure with several cool structures so you search again using the keywords “hydrogenase model” and find an interesting paper on iron-only hydrogenase active site models.
- Searching using the keywords “anticancer metal complex” would lead you to a paper on a Gold(I) complex with anticancer properties. While that might not be exactly what you wanted to find, you read the first several paragraphs and find a reference to “metal thiosemicarbazone complexes” and search Google Scholar again. Here you find a paper on Cu(II) and Ni(II) thiosemicarbazonates that you find completely fascinating.
Browse your ‘hit lists’ beyond the first page and then look at specific journals to narrow the range of your chosen topic. Is a transition metal involved? Is the compound molecular? Is a cif available for download or will you have to request it from the CCDC? While these are simple examples, you should take it as far as your interest, time, and patience allow!
One final tip for now. As soon as we have chosen an article for your MotW assignment, start writing. You may find it necessary to change topics only after you begin writing. Have a backup plan and please, have fun with it!