How to hyphenate phosphorylation?

Dr Engelbert Buxbaum engelbert_buxbaum at
Mon May 8 03:13:28 EST 2006

Wolfgang Schechinger wrote:

> phospho-rylation?
> phosphor-ylation?
> phosphory-lation?
> phosphoryl-ation?
> Any hints, reasons, rules?

There are reay only two possible sources for rules, phonetics and

In your case phos-phory-la-tion

Phos-phor is derived from the words for "light" and "carrier" (because
white phosphorus glows in the dark). -tion is a common sylable in
English, indicating a gerundium (substantive generated from a verb). So
the only question is wether to hyphenate before or after the "y". Here
I'd resort to pronounciation and hyphenate after the y, but only if I
can't use the other places.

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