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Semi-Rigid Molecular-Clip-Based Molecular Crystal Gearshift

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posted on 2018-12-07, 00:00 authored by Jia-Rui Wu, Bao Li, Jiang-Wei Zhang, Ying-Wei Yang
A new version of molecular clip, with a semi-rigid symmetrical crab-type architecture and flexible cavity size, has been successfully designed and synthesized via a one-pot Friedel–Crafts alkylation reaction. The X-ray single-crystal diffraction data provide a simple and intuitive explanation, not only for its well-preorganized and regulated conformation but also for its selective and tunable guest-binding capability. For the first time, the newly designed molecular clip was demonstrated to be not only a controllable variable-speed nonporous adsorption material in solution iodine capture, but also capable of on–off switching in volatile iodine capture. The presented new concept of molecular crystal gearshift directly from the molecular clip crystals represents an important advance in the development of synthetic receptor chemistry, which will exert a significant influence on small-molecule crystallography.