Those of you watching this blog will likely have seen multiple conversations by myself regarding the conversion of chemical names to chemical structures. There are a number of commercial products on the market performing this conversion including those of ACD/Labs, Cambridgesoft, OpenEye, Cheminnovation and ChemAxon (soon). There may be others. Also, there are now efforts going on in academia.

Last week while searching for some information in the patent database I happened across an interesting patent.

The title and lead in is listed as:

  Method, system, and software for deriving chemical structural information
A method and a system are provided for deriving chemical structures from chemical names. Chemical name fragments are grouped into a number of classifications. The method and the system handle new and old chemical names, including names for organic and inorganic substances.

My interpretation of this patent is that this is for the conversion of Chemical Names to Chemical Structures (I am not a patent lawyer though). The patent was granted to Jonathan Brecher of Cambridgesoft as listed here. The patent was granted in 2006.

As a product manager and CSO at ACD/Labs I managed the Name to Structure functionality in their nomenclature software. There was a LOT of prior art when this patent was applied for, in my opinion. Products might not have been on the market but certainly a number of companies had such capabilities. This will be interesting to watch….

PS. If you THINK you know nomenclature take the Name Quiz here

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2 Responses to “Name to Structure Conversion – and What One Little Patent Might Do…”

  1. Unilever Centre for Molecular Informatics, Cambridge - petermr’s blog » Blog Archive » Oh Dear … Patent on Name2Structure conversion says:

    [...] structures. (BTW I am genuinely grateful for this post, as for several of the others). He writes: Name to Structure Conversion – and What One Little Patent Might Do… Those of you watching this blog will likely have seen multiple conversations by myself regarding [...]

  2. ChemSpider Blog » Blog Archive » Foreign Language Translation of Chemical Nomenclature by Computer says:

    [...] Computer software for the generation of systematic names from structures and the conversion of chemical names to structures has been the subject of numerous discussions on this blog as we have discussed Chemmantis and the need for high qualityy conversion of chemical names to structures. There are a number of software programs available for the generation of names from structures and vice versa. The ones I have most knowledge of are those of ACD/Labs, Cambridgesoft and OpenEye. I have worked with all of them and they all have their strengths and weaknesses but all three companies are working to improve their products. What is interesting is Cambridegsoft’s position in regards to Name to Structure conversion…they seem to have it patented. [...]

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