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Helical polymers: synthesis, structures, and functions


SpeakerProf. Eiji Yashima

Date: Wednesday, 16th March 2016

Time: 1:00-2:30 PM

Venue: 801 Main teaching building, Changping Campus

Sponsor: Beijing University of Chemical Technology Beijing Key Laboratory of Electrochemical Process and Technology for Materials

Abstract Inspired by biological helices, chemists have worked to synthesize polymers with controlled helicity, not only to mimic the biological helices but also to realize their functions. Although numerous synthetic polymers that fold into a single-handed helix have been reported, double-stranded helical polymers are almost unavailable except for a few oligomers. In addition, the exact structures of most helical polymers remain obscure. Therefore, the development of a conceptually new method for constructing double-stranded helical polymers and a reliable method for unambiguously determining the helical structures are important and urgent challenges in this area. Here we describe the recent advances in the synthesis, structures, and functions of single- and doublestranded helical polymers and provide a brief historical overview of synthetic helical polymers. We propose a modular strategy to construct complementary double helices by employing chiral amidinium-carboxylate salt bridges with m-terphenyl backbones. The examples presented in this account demonstrate the notable progress in the synthesis and structural determination of helical polymers including single- and double-stranded helices. Not only do we better understand the principle underlying the generation of helical conformations, but we have also used the knowledge of these unique helical structures to develop novel helical polymers with specific functions. 

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