Project Details InChI and InChIKey: Further Promotion

Project No.:
Start Date:
01 February 2009
End Date:
31 December 2011


This project continues the programme of meetings established over the past two years with a wide range of users and potential users of the IUPAC International Chemical Identifier (InChI) and its fixed-length equivalent, InChIKey, in order to explain their function and potential uses and to ensure that these identifiers are used to maximum advantage by database managers, publishers and software developers; to ensure as far as possible that identifiers held both by organizations and individuals are exposed to web search capabilities, enabling coherent access to all types of chemical data across the web’s distributed database of chemical information.

This project is a continuation of project 2004-039-1-800


Since the launch of InChI version 1.0, take-up by database providers and software developers has been achieved successfully through a programme of presentations and visits by Dr Stephen Heller (see more). During 2007 and 2008 Dr Heller’s presentations and visits have been concerned to promote the new web-friendly, fixed-length identifier InChIKey, which has been welcomed enthusiastically by major players in the web-based IT world (Google and Microsoft). He has also made particular efforts to involve primary journal publishers in developing new InChI-based facilities, with the intention to achieve critical mass of published InChIs/InChIKeys in primary publications, and those organizations contacted have begun to develop suitable facilities.

However, much remains to be done in order to achieve maximal use of InChI and especially InChIKey. The latter offers a new range of search possibilities and if incorporated appropriately into publishers’ products will greatly facilitate the exposure of published identifiers to the chemical community. Potential users need advice and encouragement to proceed with development of InChI-related applications, and in view of this, the InChI project team feels that Dr Heller’s presentations and visits should continue during 2009.


For InChI release, see

The responsibility for promoting the understanding and use of InChI to users and potential users is now in the hands of the InChI Trust ; see

last update 20120118