RSC acquires rights to Merck Index


The Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) has acquired the rights to the ‘bible’ of chemistry, the Merck Index, familiar around the world to medicinal chemists and drug discovery scientists. The society will be responsible for publishing the 15th edition of the iconic red tome, which bills itself as ‘chemistry’s constant companion’. The organisation also has plans to make the index more accessible and expand its online presence.

To date, the Merck Index has sold more than 1 million copies around the world over its 123-year lifespan. The index contains a whole host of chemical structures and information on small molecule and biological drugs, environmentally important compounds and industrial and speciality chemicals, for example. The current edition also contains more than 10,000 monographs and 450 named organic reactions.

‘We are very excited to be welcoming a title as prestigious as the Merck Index to the RSC portfolio,’ said James Milne, RSC publishing executive director. ‘It makes an excellent strategic fit with our current publishing activities, complementing existing services such as ChemSpider, the award-winning free database of chemical structures.’

Derek Lowe, a medicinal chemist and regular columnist for Chemistry World, says that he thinks the RSC has got the right idea by expanding the index’s online offering. However, he notes that any upgraded index will be battling against other online sources, such as Wikipedia, and will have to work hard to make a name for itself on the internet.


Related Content

End of the road for h-index rankings

27 November 2012 News and Analysis

news image

Criticism leads US group to stop collating ranked list of living chemists

Merck KGaA to buy Sigma–Aldrich

26 September 2014 Business

news image

$17bn acquisition expands Merck’s life science business and US presence, but it isn’t stepping back from drug development

Most Read

Magnetic resonance taken to the limit

21 November 2014 Research

news image

Technique can read the spin of a single nucleus opening up a new way to investigate proteins and complex molecules

Boron and beryllium finally shake hands

24 November 2014 Research

news image

Never-before-seen bond observed between periodic table neighbours

Most Commented

US approves low acrylamide spud

25 November 2014 News and Analysis

news image

The first genetically modified potato that produces less acrylamide has been granted approval in the US

Nanostripe controversy in new twist

24 November 2014 Research

news image

Creator of striped nanoparticles insists questions over structures have already been answered and accuses critics of a 'perso...