Correlation of Chemical Structure and Taste in the Saccharin Series

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Science  03 Nov 1961:
Vol. 134, Issue 3488, pp. 1416-1417
DOI: 10.1126/science.134.3488.1416


Results of experiments with approximately 80 saccharin derivatives show that substitution in the number 2 or 3 position gives tasteless compounds. Substitution in the benzene ring of saccharin with the electron-withdrawing nitro group gives a bitter tasting substance. Substitution with an electron-donating group results in a sweet taste. Perhaps a "lock and key" fit at a receptor site is necessary for taste.