Volume 94 Issue 26 | p. 8 | Concentrates
Issue Date: June 27, 2016

Molecular knot ties up anions to catalyze reactions

Chemists find a practical purpose for an aesthetically-appealing molecule
Department: Science & Technology
News Channels: JACS In C&EN, Materials SCENE, Organic SCENE
Keywords: catalysis, molecular knot, anion-binding, catalysismolecular knot, anion-binding

With their tantalizingly tangled structures, molecular knots have undeniable aesthetic appeal. But they haven’t found any particular practical use—until now. Chemists at the University of Manchester led by David A. Leigh have discovered a molecular knot that catalyzes reactions via anion abstraction (Science 2016, DOI: 10.1126/science.aaf3673). Last year, Leigh’s group reported a pentafoil molecular knot with a central cavity so . . .

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