For those of you who have watched the historical development of ChemSpider you are likely aware of our development of the ChemMantis platform and our use of the system to deliver the Open Access journal “The ChemSpider Journal of Chemistry” (CJOC). Following the acquisition of ChemSpider by the RSC we have been extremely busy in migrating ChemSpider onto the RSC infrastructure and working on a whole series of public-facing and internal projects. Just because of time available we haven’t had time to populate CJOC with new articles. That said we have also been looking to bring more of a focus to both CJOC and ChemMantis.

The majority of interest we were getting for the platform, and the greatest benefits in terms of  the semantic markup, were shown for discussions about organic chemistry and specific to the application of organic synthesis procedures. Many of the articles that we posted to CJOC as examples were sourced from the Molbank collection, an excellent Open Access journal focused on the synthesis of chemical compounds. ChemSpider is a database of chemical compounds. When we were developing the data model for ChemSpider we always knew that a time would come where we would need to support chemical reactions. CJOC became the container for those reactions in the initial phase of our work, housing only the textual description of the synthesis and semantically linked out to chemical compounds on ChemSpider, reaction articles on Wikipedia and out links to other related information.

We have decided on a path forward for CJOC from here. That is a re-dedication of the platform to the support of synthesis procedures only. ChemMantis, or a variant of the initial platform, will be the basis of the new ChemSpider Syntheses Database (this is just an interim title for the project for now). We will host a growing collection of synthesis procedures from the community (providing a deposition platform for the community to use). We will source procedures from the RSC electronic supplementary information (ESI) provided for many of the RSC publications. We will work with collaborators, publishers and other reaction database providers to source synthesis procedures from their collections. The full details regarding this project are presently being fleshed out but the extension of ChemSpider to host chemical reactions is underway. We welcome your questions, thoughts and comments.

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3 Responses to “Where is ChemMantis and the ChemSpider Journal of Chemistry Going? Reaction Syntheses”

  1. David Sharpe says:

    ChemSpider Syntheses Database sounds exciting. I’m looking forwards to seeing this take shape!

  2. Martin Walker says:

    There are various ways a synthesis database could develop. Do you plan to focus on the experimental aspects (as at Molbank, Organic Syntheses or ), or on the transformations that occur (as at or the Organic Chemistry Portal)? Either way, it should prove useful.

  3. Antony Williams says:

    We will definitely focus on the experimental aspects as at Molbank and Synthetic Pages. We hope to couple this with the ability to associate real experimental data also: photos of crystals, experimental NMR spectra, crystal structures etc. and provide a feedback platform for people to discuss their experiences should they repeat the syntheses.

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