Volume 85, Issue 8 p. 1615-1615
Cover Profile
Free Access

Progressive Folding and Adaptive Multivalent Recognition of Alkyl Amines and Amino Acids in p-Sulfonatocalix[4]arene Hosts: Solid-State and Solution Studies

Liya Dai

Liya Dai

Lehn Institute of Functional Materials, School of Chemistry, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, 510275 P. R. China

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Dr. Wei-Xu Feng

Dr. Wei-Xu Feng

Department of Applied Chemistry, School of Science, Northwestern Polytechnical University, Xi'an, Shannxi, 710129 P. R. China

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Shao-Ping Zheng

Shao-Ping Zheng

Lehn Institute of Functional Materials, School of Chemistry, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, 510275 P. R. China

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Dr. Ji-Jun Jiang

Dr. Ji-Jun Jiang

Lehn Institute of Functional Materials, School of Chemistry, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, 510275 P. R. China

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Dr. Dawei Wang

Dr. Dawei Wang

Lehn Institute of Functional Materials, School of Chemistry, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, 510275 P. R. China

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Dr. Arie van der Lee

Dr. Arie van der Lee

Institut Europeen des Membranes, Adaptive Supramolecular Nanosystems Group, University of Montpellier, ENSCM-CNRS, Place E. Bataillon CC047, 34095 Montpellier, France

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Dr. Dan Dumitrescu

Dr. Dan Dumitrescu

XRD2 beamline, Elettra - Sincrotrone Trieste S.C.p.A., Strada Statale 14 - km 163,5 in AREA Science Park, 34149 Basovizza, Trieste, Italy

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Dr. Mihail Barboiu

Corresponding Author

Dr. Mihail Barboiu

Lehn Institute of Functional Materials, School of Chemistry, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, 510275 P. R. China

Institut Europeen des Membranes, Adaptive Supramolecular Nanosystems Group, University of Montpellier, ENSCM-CNRS, Place E. Bataillon CC047, 34095 Montpellier, France

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First published: 21 July 2020

Graphical Abstract

“Molecular recognition is a fascinating process as the behavior of guests is generally different upon interaction with a host molecule compared to that in solution. When crossing the solution/host barrier, unexpected phenomena can be observed within a “compartmentalized” chemical space, thus giving rise to new emergent areas of chemistry and physics under confined conditions.” Read more about the story behind the cover in the Cover Profile and about the research itself (DOI: 10.1002/cplu.2012000232).

Abstract

Invited for this month's cover is the group of Dr. Mihail Barboiu from the Institut Europeen des Membranes of Montpellier, France and the Lehn Institute of Functional Materials at Sun-yat Sen University in Guangzhou, China. The cover picture shows the molecular recognition of folded 1,ω-amino-acids guests within p-sulfonatocalix[4]arene host anions stabilized with alternating hydrated cations and water molecules. Read the full text of the article at 10.1002/cplu.202000232.

What prompted you to investigate this topic/problem?

image

Compartmentalization is a basic feature of physiological processes, and depends on selective exchange of metabolites between the cells and their exteriors. Molecular recognition is a fascinating process as the behavior of guests is generally different upon interaction with a host molecule compared to that in solution. When crossing the solution/host barrier, unexpected phenomena can be observed within a “compartmentalized” chemical space, thus giving rise to new emergent areas of chemistry and physics under confined conditions. In this study, we used on calix[4]arene host crystals and studied the folding behavior of molecules of biological relevance. The process involves adaptive hydrophobic recognition followed by electrostatic stabilization in the host–guest architectures in water.

What do you consider exciting developments in the field?

Stabilization of larger biomolecular guests by adapting their conformation in H-bonded supramolecular hosts, has been employed to show evidence of constrained conformations and give answers on how molecular compression occurs. The exact coiling behavior has been determined from atomic-resolution X-ray diffraction and shows folded conformations in the compressed states. These findings may provide insights in areas ranging from nanomechanics to biological pathways such as in fatty acid metabolism. image