The three-dimensional arrangement of an organic molecule that is caused by:

  • double bonds that prevent free rotation, or
  • chiral centers that have side groups arranged around them in a particular order.
  • A configurational isomer can't be turned into another configuration without breaking covalent bonds.


    From the BioTech Dictionary at http://biotech.icmb.utexas.edu/. For further information see the BioTech homenode.

    Con*fig`u*ra"tion (?), n. [L. configuratio.]

    1.

    Form, as depending on the relative disposition of the parts of a thing' shape; figure.

    It is the variety of configurations [of the mouth] . . . which gives birth and origin to the several vowels. Harris.

    2. Astrol.

    Relative position or aspect of the planets; the face of the horoscope, according to the relative positions of the planets at any time.

    They [astrologers] undertook . . . to determine the course of a man's character and life from the configuration of the stars at the moment of his birth. Whewell.

     

    © Webster 1913.

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