Letter | Published:

Identification of Formic Acid as the p-Bromophenacyl Ester

Nature volume 193, page 579 (10 February 1962) | Download Citation



IN the course of work on the microbial metabolism of glycine and glyoxylic acid we have had occasion to isolate formic acid as the p-bromophenacyl ester which is widely quoted1,2 as having m.p. 140°. It was observed that the derivative, m.p. 140–42°, isolated from authentic sodium 14C-formate (95,200 counts/min./µmol.) was inactive and showed no depression in melting point when mixed with p-bromophenacyl alcohol, m.p. 142°. A search of the literature revealed that Neish and Lemieux3 have made a similar observation and have described a preparation of authentic p-bromophenacylformate, m.p. 92°. In my hands the methods of Neish and Lemieux yields a derivative, m.p. 98° (92,200 counts/min./µmol.), when the above-labelled formate is used in the preparation (cf. Heilbron and Bunbury4, who quote m.p. 99°).

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    , and , J. Amer. Chem. Soc., 57, 2007 (1935).

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    , Textbook of Practical Organic Chemistry, third ed. (Longmans, Green and Co., London, 1956).

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    , and , Canad. J. Res., 30, 454 (1952).

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    , and , Dictionary of Organic Compounds (Eyre and Spottiswoode, London, 1953).

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    , J. Bact., 68, 598 (1954).

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  1. Department of Biochemistry, University of Glasgow.

    • G. W. CROSBIE


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