Show Summary Details

Quick Reference

Any of a group of organic pigments characterized by the possession of a cyclic group of four linked nitrogen-containing rings (a tetrapyrrole nucleus), the nitrogen atoms of which are often coordinated to metal ions. Porphyrins differ in the nature of their side-chain groups. They include the chlorophylls, which contain magnesium; and haem, which contains iron and forms the prosthetic group of haemoglobin, myoglobin, and the cytochromes. Porphyrins are also used in host-guest chemistry. See supramolecular chemistry.


Subjects: Chemistry.

Reference entries

See all related reference entries in Oxford Index »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.