# 1 to 4-fold / 1- to 4-fold [hyphen]

#### NIGI

##### Senior Member
Hello everyone.

Lets say there is an increase in the rate of a reaction, and it increases from 1 to 4-fold. I am confused as to the placing of the hyphen is it

1 to 4-fold
1- to 4-fold
1-to 4-fold

You get the idea.
Incidentally, the client is American so if there is a difference in Uk/American English and you know about it..... you know the procedure.

Many thanks ppl

nigi

• #### JamesM

##### Senior Member
I'm not sure if it's the current style, but I was taught the second option: "1- to 4-fold".

#### CurrantBunbury

##### Member
I'd agree with that. I don't know about the current style either, but it seems the only reasonable option. What you're saying is: "the reaction increases from 1-fold to 4-fold", omitting the first 'fold'. The rest of your sentence has to behave as if the 'fold' hadn't been omitted, so the hyphen stays.

#### panjandrum

##### Lapsed Moderator
I agree with the others about the hyphens, but I'm troubled by the sentence.
Exactly what increases from 1-fold to 4-fold?

#### NIGI

##### Senior Member
Ok thanks, I'm going to trust you. It seems logical.
Thanks for your input.

nigi

#### Myridon

##### Senior Member
I'm troubled by one-fold in general (something is one times itself - what a tautological thing to say and I am one-fold in that!) and by the use of -fold in a scientific context. To me, it seems vague and old-fashioned at the same time.

#### JulianStuart

##### Senior Member
"The rate of reaction increases one-fold." This does not make logical sense.

"The rate of reaction doubled". That would make logical sense.

"It increases from one-fold to something bigger" makes the same logical mis-step.

"The rate increased from one to four". This could make sense if the units of measure had already been made clear.

If the estimates of the increase in rate of reaction ranged from 1=one fold (i.e. no change) to 4 fold, then the best way might be to say
"The rate of reaction increased up to four fold."

The surrounding text (aka context) might help us understand. I am confused by such ambiguous wording.