Chirality Transfer in a Methyl Lactate–Ammonia Complex Observed by Matrix-Isolation Vibrational Circular Dichroism Spectroscopy


  • This research was funded by the University of Alberta and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada. C.M. thanks the Alexander von Humboldt foundation for a Feodor Lynen postdoctoral fellowship. We gratefully acknowledge access to the computing facilities provided by the Western Canadian Research Grid (Westgrid). Y.X. holds a Tier I Canada Research Chair in Chirality and Chirality Recognition.


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Hand-me-down chirality: Chirality transfer from methyl lactate to ammonia has been investigated and the mirror-imaged vibrational circular dichroism (VCD) spectra of a pair of enantiomers of a flexible chiral molecular complex are presented. The distinct VCD spectral pattern provides decisive evidence for the existence of two dominant and subtly different conformers of the complex.