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Professor Jonathan Nitschke

Portrait of jrn34

Figuring out the rules

We are interested in discovering and developing new ways in which simple building blocks may be induced to self-assemble into complex, functional structures. Our investigations currently focus upon the self-assembly of imine bonds around metal-ion templates, bringing both covalent C=N and coordinative N→Metal bonds into being during the same overall self-assembly process. The structures thus created can rearrange in well-defined ways at both covalent and coordinative linkages. Ongoing projects include:

 

Container Molecules. The diamine and aldehyde shown above self-assemble with iron(II) in water to form a tetrahedral cage. This cage traps guest molecules within its cavity with high selectivity. The cage may be opened and the guest released using different triggers, one of which is a drop in pH. Applications in drug delivery are of interest, as are investigations of changes in the reactivity and behaviour of guest molecules upon encapsulation.

 

Functional Materials. We have recently developed means to create metal-containing conjugated polymers through self-assembly. DFT calculations carried out by Laura Gagliardi and Christopher Cramer suggest that these might conduct electricity. Studies are thus being undertaken to investigate their properties.

Selected Publications

 

Feature Article: “Metal-organic container molecules through subcomponent self-assembly”, T.K. Ronson, S. Zarra, S.P. Black, J.R. Nitschke, Chem. Commun. 2013, 49, 2476-2490.

“Enantiopure Water-Soluble Fe4L6 Cages: Host-Guest Chemistry and Catalytic Activity”, Jeanne L. Bolliger, Ana M. Belenguer, and Jonathan R. Nitschke, Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2013, 52, 7958-7962.

“Aqueous Self-assembly of an Electroluminescent Double-helical Metallo-polymer”, X. de Hatten,  D. Asil, R.H. Friend, J.R. Nitschke,  J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2012, 135, 19170-19178.

“Anion-induced Reconstitution of a Self-assembling System to Express a Chloride-binding Co10L15 Pentagonal Prism”, I.A. Riddell, M.M.J. Smulders, J.K. Clegg, Y.R. Hristova, B. Breiner, J.D. Thoburn, J.R. Nitschke, Nature Chem. 2012, 51, 751-756.

 “White phosphorus is air-stable within a self-assembled tetrahedral capsule” P. Mal, B. Breiner, K. Rissanen and J.R. Nitschke, Science 2009, 324, 1697-1699.

“Systems chemistry: Molecular networks come of age” J.R. Nitschke, Nature 2009, 462, 736-738.

Publications

Mutual stabilisation between (M4L6)-L-II tetrahedra and (MX42-)-X-II metallate guests
IA Riddell, TK Ronson, JR Nitschke – Chemical Science (2015) 6, 3533
Selective Endo and Exo Binding of Mono- and Ditopic Ligands to a Rhomboidal Diporphyrin Prism
G Jayamurugan, DA Roberts, TK Ronson, JR Nitschke – Angew Chem Int Ed Engl (2015) n/a
Designed enclosure enables guest binding within the 4200 Å3 cavity of a self-assembled cube
WJ Ramsay, FT Szczypiński, H Weissman, TK Ronson, MMJ Smulders, B Rybtchinski, JR Nitschke – Angewandte Chemie - International Edition (2015) 54, 5636
Stimuli-Responsive Metal-Ligand Assemblies.
AJ McConnell, CS Wood, PP Neelakandan, JR Nitschke – Chem Rev (2015) 150416122609006
Designed enclosure enables guest binding within the 4200 å(3) cavity of a self-assembled cube.
WJ Ramsay, FT Szczypiński, H Weissman, TK Ronson, MM Smulders, B Rybtchinski, JR Nitschke – Angew Chem Int Ed Engl (2015) 54, 5636
Two-stage directed self-assembly of a cyclic [3]catenane
CS Wood, TK Ronson, AM Belenguer, JJ Holstein, JR Nitschke – Nature Chemistry (2015) 7, 354
Guest-induced transformation of a porphyrin-edged FeII 4L6 capsule into a CuIFeII 2L4 fullerene receptor
DM Wood, W Meng, TK Ronson, AR Stefankiewicz, JKM Sanders, JR Nitschke – Angewandte Chemie - International Edition (2015) 54, 3988
Guest-Induced Transformation of a Porphyrin-Edged Fe II 4 L 6 Capsule into a Cu I Fe II 2 L 4 Fullerene Receptor
DM Wood, W Meng, TK Ronson, AR Stefankiewicz, JK Sanders, JR Nitschke – Angew Chem Int Ed Engl (2015) 54, 3988
Cooperative loading and release behavior of a metal-organic receptor.
Q Gan, TK Ronson, DA Vosburg, JD Thoburn, JR Nitschke – Journal of the American Chemical Society (2015) 137, 1770
Designed enclosure enables guest binding within the 4200 Å3 cavity of a self-assembled cube
WJ Ramsay, FT Szczypiński, H Weissman, TK Ronson, MMJ Smulders, B Rybtchinski, JR Nitschke – Angewandte Chemie - International Edition (2015) 54, 5793
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Research Group

Research Interest Groups

Telephone number

01223 336324

Email address

jrn34@cam.ac.uk