stereoisomers with identical chemical and physical properties except for direction (sign) of rotation of the light polarization plane. Structurally, molecules of optical antipodes are related to each other as an object is to its mirror image. An antipode rotating the polarization plane to the right is called dextrorotatory [(+)-antipode], and an antipode turning the polarization plane to the left is called levorotatory [(-)-antipode]. An example of an optical antipode is glyceraldehyde.
Optical antipodes frequently occur in natural substances.