A search for interstellar pyrimidine

Yi Jehng Kuan*, Chi Hung Yan, Steven B. Charnley, Zbigniew Kisiel, Pascale Ehrenfreund, Hui Chun Huang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

71 Citations (Scopus)


We have searched three hot molecular cores for submillimetre emission from the nucleic acid building block pyrimidine. We obtain upper limits to the total pyrimidine (beam-averaged) column densities towards Sgr B2(N), Orion KL and W51 el/e2 of 1.7 × 1014, 2.4 × 1014 and 3.4 × 1014 cm-2, respectively. The associated upper limits to the pyrimidine fractional abundances lie in the range (0.3-3) × 10-10. Implications of this result for interstellar organic chemistry, and for the prospects of detecting nitrogen heterocycles in general, are discussed briefly.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)650-656
Number of pages7
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2003 Oct 21


  • Astrobiology
  • ISM: individual: Orion KL
  • ISM: individual: Sgr B2(N)
  • ISM: individual: W51 el/e2
  • ISM: molecules
  • Line: identification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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