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Photoswitchable Metal Coordinating Tweezers Operated by Light-Harvesting Dendrimers

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journal contribution
posted on 19.09.2012, 00:00 by Enrico Marchi, Massimo Baroncini, Giacomo Bergamini, Jeroen Van Heyst, Fritz Vögtle, Paola Ceroni
A dendrimer bearing two cyclam units linked by an azobenzene moiety, and luminescent naphthalene units at the periphery performs three different functions (light-harvesting, photoisomerization and coordination of metal ions) which can cooperate or interfere depending on the nature of the metal ion. It is thus an example of light controlled molecular tweezers in which Zn­(II) coordination allows 100% efficient photosensitization of azobenzene switching, while Cu­(II) shuts down azobenzene isomerization.