50 years ago in Cambridge, Olga Kennard began the collection of crystal structures of molecules resulting in the creation of one of the world’s first numeric scientific databases.

Now grown to contain well over ¾ million structures, the Cambridge Structural Database (CSD) is in use in almost every chemistry department in the world. Pharmaceutical companies depend on it to drive drug discovery projects. Materials scientists design ever more complex 3D network structures. Information from the database underpins all molecular mechanics forcefields and interaction scoring functions allow putative drug molecules to be docked to their protein receptors.

And it is a community achievement. From the start, the results of every published crystal structure determined have been shared with the CCDC – allowing us to share them with the world.

Session Write-ups


Press Release


Scientific Symposium

The Cambridge Structural Database at 50: Origins, Influences and Directions

July 1-3 2015



CSD50 Snap Shot