Bioluminescence as a Special Case of Chemiluminescence

  • Karl-Dietrich Gundermann
  • Frank McCapra
Part of the Reactivity and Structure: Concepts in Organic Chemistry book series (REACTIVITY, volume 23)


Interest in living examples of luminescence is of course older than the study of chemiluminescence. The organic chemist became interested in both in a systematic way about twenty five years ago. It could be argued that investigation of the more complex phenomenon of bioluminescence has in fact been of greater value in understanding the chemiluminescence of synthetic compounds than the reverse. There are several reviews of the biological [1, 2], biochemical [3, 4] and chemical aspects [5, 6, 7] of bioluminescence and only the briefest outline of this delightful natural manifestation will be made. However, the chemiluminescence of model compounds has played a large part in explaining the details of the all — important excitation step, and this aspect is emphasised here.


Active Ester Singlet Excited State Alkyl Hydroperoxide High Light Yield Bioluminescent Reaction 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • Karl-Dietrich Gundermann
    • 1
  • Frank McCapra
    • 2
  1. 1.Institut für Organische ChemieTechnische Universität ClausthalClausthal-ZellerfeldGermany
  2. 2.The School of Chemistry and Molecular SciencesThe University of SussexFalmer, BrightonUK

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