So I was researching about thalidomide when a thought struck to me. Why does the left enantiomer react differently than the right? They have the same elements and structure.

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    $\begingroup$ Try shaking somebody’s left hand with your right hand. And then try shaking their right hand with your right hand. $\endgroup$ – Jan Jan 3 '17 at 23:07
  • $\begingroup$ Presumably, you mean they interact differently in the body leading to different biological activity. Please update your question if this is so. $\endgroup$ – jerepierre Jan 4 '17 at 0:40

With other chiral molecules, the transition states are necessarily diastereomeric. Those transition states thus have different energies, which implies that rates will be different. Also, the products with other chiral reactants are diastereomeric, so equilibrium mixtures will be different.


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