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Book Review Developments in Inorganic Nitrogen Chemistry. Edited by Ch. B. Colburn

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Occasional overlapping is found in the treatment of similar
topics, as e.g. in the case of the serum glycoproteins, which
play an important part in the field of sugar-protein compounds; however this is practically unavoidable in a book
written by several authors. The presentation is excellent, and
the book offers the first self-contained survey of the field in
question for the research worker who is interested in the biochemistry of the glycoproteins, a particularly valuable feature
being the detailed critical appraisal and description of the
H. Faillard
[NB 602 IEI
methods used in this field.
Developments in Inorganic Nitrogen Chemistry. Edited by
Ch. B. Colburn, Elsevier, Amsterdam-London-New York
1966. 583 pp.. 180 s.
As a result of its many-sided nature the chemistry of nitrogen
has always interested chemists in general. Developments in
this branch of chemistry have by no means been neglected
during the past decades, even if the results have not been and
are not as spectacular as in other fields. Colburn suggested a
discussion of the developm-nts in the inorganic chemistry of
nitrogen, and has now succeeded in persuading internationally
famous authors to contribute to the individual fields.
In this first volume, M . Green discusses the results of MO and
VB calculations for simple nitrogen-containing molecules in
a section entitled “Bonding in nitrogen compounds” (71
pages). It becomes clear what difficulties must still be overcome before adequate agreement between calculated and
experimental results is obtained. This exceptionally interesting
and clear chapter is followed by a discussion of the chemistry
of “Inorganic azides” (78 pages) by A. D . Yoffe, with emphasis o n physical and physicochemical zspects.The chemical
properties, particularly of the covalent azides, are dealt with
too briefly, organometallic azides being almost entirely
ignored. Nevertheless, Yoffe’s contribution contains perhaps
unusual, but extremely useful, material for the chemist.
M. Becke-Goehring and E. Fluck discuss in detail the chemistry of inorganic compounds with S-N bonds (92 pages). It
is precisely in this field that substantial progress has been
made and new knowledge gained during the past two decades. The contribution by W. P. Criffith (66 pages) on
“Nitrogen ligands”, i.e. transition metal complexes, in which
the nitrogen atom behaves as a donor is necessarily restricted
to a small range of selected examples As illustrations, the
author has chosen NH3, N2H4, NHzOH, amide and imide,
cyanate, fulminate, thiocyanate, selenocyanate, cyanide, alkylnitrile and alkyl cyanide complexes, with nitrido, azido,
azo, nitrate, nitrite, NO, and NS complexes. Twenty pages
are devoted to the chemistry of complexes with amines and
heterocyclic bases.
A detailed though not very clearly arranged discussion
of phosphorus-nitrogen compounds by M. L . Nielsen occupies
165 pages (without touching on the cyclic phosphorus
nitrides). This work must be at present the most complete
survey of compounds containing P-N bonds. The description by J. K. Rufl of the nitrogen compounds of boron,
aluminum, gallium, indium, and thallium (51 pages) does
less than full justice to boron-nitrogen chemistry (22 pages),
but shows how quickly our knowledge of nitrogen compounds
becomes scanty as soon as we pass o n to the heavier elements
of this group. In conclusion, G . W.A.Fow2es gives a clear,
very instructive summary on “Inorganic reactions in liquid
ammonia” (54 pages). A very meager subject index is
matched by the absence of a n author index.
The book can serve as a very useful source of information for
all those wishing to obtain a survey of the subject. Both the
type of discussion and the level of the individual articles
vary, and yet the book as a whole is surprisingly coherent.
The price needs some consideration, especially in view of the
fact that the literature considered does not as a rule extend
beyond 1962.
H. Nojh
INB 642 IE]
Advances in Magnetic Resonance. Vol. 1. Edited by J . S .
Waugh. Academic Press. New York-London 1966. 1st
Edit., xi, 413 pages, numerous figures and tables, S 15.00.
The first successful observations of magnetic resonance
phenomena date back about twenty years. Developments in
this field since then have been so extensive that it is practically
impossible for the individual to obtain a full general picture.
The appearance at this stage of progress reports on magnetic
resonance methods is therefore very welcome. This thought
has obviously been shared by others, since a similar work is
to be published soon by Pergamon Press.However, it is clear
from the list of forthcoming publications that there is little
fear of excessive overlap in the near future.
The field covered by “Advances in Magnetic Resonance” is
to be very wide, and in addition to nuclear spin resonance,
electron spin resonance, and nuclear quadrupole resonance,
it will also include related topics such as molecular beams,
optical pumping, and microwave spectroscopy.
Each volume will contain five to ten review articles. Besides
original theoretical articles, they will contain reports on
speculative views or on individual phenomena, as well as
accurate tables.
Volume 1 contains an article by A . G. Redfieldon the “Theory
of Relaxation Processes”, which is essentially a revised and
further annotated version of his paper in IBM J. Res. Develop. I , 19 (1957). In a chapter on “Chemlcal Rate Processes
and Magnetic Resonance”, C. S. Johnson j r . reports on the
concepts and methods of this field, which IS particularly important to nuclear magnetic resonancd A welcome article is
the review by D . R . Eaton and W . D . PhilLips on “Nuclear
Magnetic Resonance of Paramagnetic Molecules”, which
shows what conclusions Concerning the geometric and electronic structure of Mramagnetic molecules and metal complexes can be drawn from the isotropic hyperfine contact and
pseudocontact interaction between magnetic atomic nuclei
and unpaired electrons.
The next two chapters form a well matched pair. In “Theory
of Nuclear Spin-Spin Coupling”, M . Barfield and D. M.
Grant point out the difficulties and dangers of approximations (mainly VB and MO methods) for the calculation of
nuclear spin coupling constants. This is followed by a valuable 120-page tabulation by A . A . Bothner-By of all that is
known with certainty about “Geniinal and Vicinal ProtonProton Coupling Constants in Organic Compounds”, with
many structural formulae. Only lox of the measurements
that have been reported were accepted as sufficiently accurate.
A short introduction gives rules for the estimation of the
magnitude and sign of the coupling constants. The book
closes with a useful tabulation by K. W. Bowers on “Electron
Spin Resonance of Radical Ions”, covering literature up to
mid-1964. The table gives the empirical formula of the ion,
name and structure of the neutral molecule, hyperfine splitting constants, solvent, and references.
The volume contains an author and subject index. It can be
recommended in every respect.
R. F. Ziircher
[NB 601 IE]
Bioorganic Mechanisms. By T. C. Bruice and S . Benkovic.
From the series “Frontiers in Chemistry”. W. A. Benjamin. Inc.. New York-Amsterdam 1966. 1st calt., Vol. 1,
viii, 372 pp., numerous figures, bound S 22.50. Vol. 2:
viii, 419 pp., numerous figures, bound S 25.00.
The reaction mechanisms of enzyme-chemical processes
form a n area between theoretical organic chemistry and biological chemistry, for which the new term “bioorganic mechanisms” has been coined. This new creation might lead one
to think that it is associated with self-willed sensationalism.
However, a perusal of the present two volumes shows
that this is not so. This term describes exactly what is meant,
i.e. the field in which enzyme reactions and enzyme mechanisms can be interpreted with the aid of more or less complete
Angew. Chem. internat. Edit.
/ Vol. 6 (1967) / No. I 1
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development, chemistry, inorganic, book, colburn, nitrogen, edited, review
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