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Spiro compounds are molecules containing two rings with just one shared atom (the spiroatom). Spiro containing systems not only have greater three-dimensionality than flat aromatic compounds, but also introduce structural novelty for patentability. Even though both spirocyclic and flat aromatic rings can impact ligand binding entropy, it has been suggested that compounds with too many flat rings have suboptimal physical properties and are less likely to be successfully developed as drugs.
A series of medicinal products containing spiro rings has been firmly incorporated in medical practice.
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