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Review | Regular issue | Vol 14, No. 4, 1980, pp.477-504
Published online, 1st January, 1970
DOI: 10.3987/R-1980-04-0477
Naturally Occurring Pyrazines and Their Mass Spectrometric Characterisation

J. J. Brophy* and G. W. K. Cavill

*School of Chemistry, The University of New South Wales, Sydney 2052, Australia


The occurrence of pyrazines in plants and animals - terrestrial and marine - is reviewed. Pyrazines detected in raw and cooked foods are also listed. Aspects of the biosynthesis and biogenesis of the pyrazines are considered, and attention is drawn to the role of various groups of pyrazines in food chemistry, as insect pheromones and in luminescence processes in marine organisms. Pyrazines occur in trace proportions, so their chemical characterisation by mass spectrometry is considered in detail. Salient features of the mass spectra of the various classes of naturally occurring pyrazines are reviewed.