Handy induction

Finding a way to induce a specific handedness in biological molecules may help explain nature's chiral bias as well as leading to new approaches to creating therapeutic agents that are more effective than their racemic counterparts. Now, Richard Rosenberg of Argonne National Laboratory has found the way using strong X-rays to bombard chiral molecules adsorbed on a magnetic substrate. He and his colleagues found that changing the magnetization direction in relation to the high-intensity X-ray beam created a usable enantiomeric excess.