This week’s blog has a valentine’s theme. Some of you may ask what the Cambridge Structural Database (CSD) has to do with romance…well the link is tenuous, but love and romance are all about chemistry!! Of course, this creates the perfect excuse to explore Valentines related crystal structures in the CSD.
Some say love is blind, but in fact, the biochemistry of attraction is quite complex and the subject of a lot of research. Two important compounds that play a role are Serotonin and Oxytocin. The former improves our mood and makes us feel good, certainly a good foundation for relationships. While the freebase is not in the CSD, there is a salt listed, Refcode HTRCRS, that is interesting. Bonding and trust building between mammals involves Oxytocin (DUPFAV), which has the nickname ‘the love hormone’. It also has other physiological functions, the most well-known in that it initiates labor during pregnancy.