Combinatorial chemistry (or CombiChem) is an innovative method of synthesizing many different substances quickly and at the same time. Combinatorial chemistry contrasts with the time-consuming and labor intensive methods of traditional chemistry where compounds are synthesized individually, one at a time. While combinatorial chemistry is primarily used by organic chemists who are seeking new drugs, chemists are also now applying combinatorial chemistry to other fields such as semiconductors, superconductors, catalysts and polymers.
CombiChem is used to synthesize large number of chemical compounds by combining sets of building blocks. Each newly synthesized compound's composition is slightly different from the previous one. A traditional chemist can synthesize 100-200 compounds per year. A combinatorial robotic system can produce in a year thousands or millions compounds which can be tested for potential drug candidates in a high-throughput screening process.
Over the last few years, the combinatorial chemistry has emerged as an exciting new paradigm for the drug discovery. In a very short time the topic has become the focus of considerable scientific interest and research efforts.
Last Updated: June 2, 2018