December 14, 2010
Image of Warfarin 3D Image of Warfarin

Warfarin is an anticoagulant coumarin derivative with two very different uses. In the 1930s, K. P. Link and co-workers at the University of Wisconsin identified warfarin as the constituent of spoiled hay that caused hemorrhaging in cattle. Its name combines the acronym for the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation and the “arin” in coumarin.

In the 1940s, WARF developed it as a rodenticide and in the 1950s as a drug to prevent thrombosis and embolism in humans under the trade name Coumadin. The article of commerce is the racemic mixture; the (S)-enantiomer is shown in the figure.

Chemical Abstract Service - a division of ACS

Learn more about this molecule from CAS, the most authoritative and comprehensive source for chemical information.

Molecule of the Week needs your suggestions!

If your favorite molecule is not in our archive, please send us a message. The molecule can be notable for its current or historical importance or for any quirky reason. Thank you!

Stay Ahead of the Chemistry Curve

Learn how ACS can help you stay ahead in the world of chemistry.