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Definition - What does Enantiomers mean?

Enantiomers are a set of two molecules that each feature a central atom joined by four distinct/groups(s) of atoms that project a mirror image of themselves with no plane of symmetry. The chiral center is the bond where each molecule does not match or overlap with its counterpart. Enantiomers can deflect light rays based on a set of molecules with the same chiral compound reflected in a mirror plane.

SureHire explains Enantiomers

Enantiomers fall under a class of molecules called stereoisomers. While these compounds feature the same number of atoms between sets of molecules, their chiral centers can reflect two substances with a similar makeup. The drug methamphetamine is a good example. The enantiomers that give their chiral compound base fall into two distinct molecules known as D and L isomers. They differ by their spatial vector or dimensions apart from each other, which gives the enantiomers of the substance its mirror image. Lab testing methods can pose a challenge to cross-analyze legal and illicit forms of the parent drug. To that end, a D/L isomer test relies on the chemical breakdown of the drug compound, which will reveal the enantiomers or pairs of molecules to compare the difference.

Though a simple urine sample can detect drug metabolites in the system, it lacks uniform metrics to clear the test subject of suspected drug use. In a methamphetamine case, a D/L isomer test will quantify the enantiomers of each set of molecules to verify if the patient uses a prescription or illicit form of the drug. This approach can help dismiss a false positive case from the mix.

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