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Keywords:

  • Biosynthesis;
  • Cyclitols

Abstract

Information has recently been obtained, mainly with the aid of radioactive compounds, about the biosynthesis of various cyclitols. It was found that the most widely occurring cyclitol, meso-inositol, is biosynthesized by a pathway probably common to all organisms, in which the cyclohexane ring is formed by ring closure between the two terminal carbon atoms of D-glucose. Cell-free extracts or enzyme systems that catalyse the conversion of D-glucose into meso-inositol can be prepared from various biological materials. The biosynthesis of the other hexahydroxycyclohexanes (inositols) involves meso-inositol as an intermediate. A few steps in the conversion of meso-inositol into other inositols have been studied.