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The automated identification of chiral centres in molecular residues is a non-trivial task. Current tools that allow the user to analyze crystallographic data entries do not identify chiral centres in some of the more complex ring structures, or lack the possibility to determine and compare the chirality of multiple structures. This article presents an approach to identify asymmetric C atoms, which is based on the atomic walk count algorithm presented by Rücker & Rücker [(1993), J. Chem. Inf. Comput. Sci. 33, 683–695]. The algorithm, which we implemented in a computer program named ChiChi, is able to compare isomeric residues based on the chiral centres that were identified. This allows for discrimination between enantiomers, diastereomers and constitutional isomers that are present in crystallographic databases. ChiChi was used to process 254 354 organic entries from the Cambridge Structural Database (CSD). A thorough analysis of stereoisomerism in the CSD is presented accompanied by a collection of chiral curiosities that illustrate the strength and versatility of this approach.

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